GNC files for bankruptcy, with plans to close up to 1,200 stores

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GNC Holdings Inc. GNC, -6.89% filed for bankruptcy late Tuesday, as it expects to accelerate its plan to close at least 800 to 1,200 of its stores. The stock has been halted for news since late Tuesday. The vitamin and wellness supplements retailer, with about 7,300 stores as of March 31, said its stores will remain open, as the company has secured $130 million in liquidity, including $100 million in debtor-in-possession financing and $30 million from modifications to an existing credit facility. GNC, a majority of its secured lenders and Harbin Pharmaceutical Group Holding Co. Ltd., an affiliate of GNC’s largest shareholder, have reached an agreement in principle for the sale of the company’s business for $760 million, which would be executed through a court-supervised auction. The stock has rallied 74.2% over the past three months through Tuesday, but has tumbled 70.0% year to date, while the S&P 500 SPX, -0.66% has slipped 3.1% this year.

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