ARI to purchase 50 Below's retail division

Publish Date: 
Nov 8, 2012

DULUTH, Minn. - The Duluth News-Tribune is reporting that a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge has approved the sale of 50 Below's assets to two companies, one of which is powersports software provider, ARI.

Milwaukee-based ARI will buy 50 Below's retail division for $5 million, and vows to keep jobs and the company in Duluth, the paper reports. ARI reportedly beat out a bid by Dominion Enterprises.

Judge George Kishel also approved the sale of 50 Below's financial services division to San Diego-based Emerald Connect for $3.5 million.

50 Below filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in August citing  liabilities of more than $12 million (mostly tax-related), and estimated assets of no more than $50,000. According to court documents, the company owes the Internal Revenue Service, its top creditor, $8.9 million in payroll taxes. The company also owes Minnesota about $1.5 million in taxes and unemployment insurance.

Other top 20 creditors include ADP Lightspeed ($205,000), World of Powersports ($150,000), electronic catalog provider HLSM ($110,000), and Advanstar Communications ($27,000; Advanstar is the parent company of Dealernews and Dealer Expo).

Posted by Dennis Johnson