The Geo. W. Park Seed Company, Park Seed Wholesale Company, and the Jackson & Perkins Company voluntarily filed Friday to reorganize under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the District of South Carolina.
Park Seed Company says customers should not be affected by the filing. Park Seed and Jackson & Perkins’ South Carolina-business office, garden Center, call center and websites are open and functioning normally. Shipping and receiving areas are continuing their daily operations, delivering products to gardeners around the country.
“The horticulture industry is challenging and highly seasonal in the best of times,” says an unidentified company spokesperson. “As the general economic situation declined starting in 2008, demand for luxury, non-essential purchases dropped sharply. All of our brands experienced significant decreases in sales for core products, including roses, perennials and garden-inspired gifts. This created cash-flow issues that worsened with each passing season.
“Despite deep cost cutting and numerous attempts to execute supplier payment programs on our own, we simply could not meet our short- and long-term operating cash requirements. Seeking court protection and restructuring is clearly our best option for returning to a position where we can focus on delighting our customers and resuming sound relationships with our supply chain partners.”
The companies are currently functioning as a “debtor in possession,” under the leadership of a court-appointed trustee. The companies have 120 days following the filing to prepare a plan that contains a new capital structure for the company and that treats all creditors equitably.