Jun 22, 2023 - Economy

Why Bed Bath & Beyond's brand will still exist despite bankruptcy

Bed Bath & Beyond store

Photo: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Overstock.com won the auction of troubled retailer Bed Bath & Beyond’s intellectual property and digital assets, carrying on its name but not its brick-and-mortar locations.

Why it matters: Bed Bath & Beyond's demise is the latest death blow to the era of the category killer, following rival Linens 'n Things, not to mention Circuit City, RadioShack and Toys R Us and others that live on in name only.

The big picture: For other retailers that have sold IP and live on through e-commerce, “they're doing enough business to continue to function,” D.A. Davidson analyst Michael Baker tells Kimberly.

  • Baker cites Radio Shack (www.RadioShack.com) and Linens 'n Things (www.lnt.com), which are both owned by Retail Ecommerce Ventures — which also scooped up the bankrupt Pier 1 (www.pier1.com).
  • “Now, it does not cost a lot to function as a website," he adds. "The fact that they still exist tells you that there's some measure of success.”

What’s happening: Overstock will pay $21.5 million for the company’s name, business data and online properties, which was the agreed-upon sale price that set the floor for the bankruptcy-run auction, according to court filings.

  • The online furniture marketplace was picked as Bed Bath’s stalking horse bidder.
  • Bed Bath will need court approval for the deal. The hearing is set for June 27.

Zoom in: Ten Twenty Four, a pricing software company that does business under Beyond Pricing, was selected as a backup bidder for the Beyond.com asset. The company could still win rights to the domain name if the Overstock deal collapses.

  • Bed Bath also picked JOWA Brands as a backup bidder solely for the IP of its Wamsutta brand, its private sheets and towels label.

Zoom out: The fate of Buy Buy Baby is still up in the air as the retailer decided to run a separate sale process.

  • The all-things-baby chain has several bidders circling, including Go Global Retail and Babylist.
  • It’s likely they keep some of the baby chain’s physical footprint.
  • There will be a court hearing for those assets on June 28.

What’s next: The question of what happens to the rest of the company’s real estate assets is still TBD.

  • Overstock declined to comment.
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