Stein Mart closing stores after filing for bankruptcy
August 13, 2020 - Stein Mart expects to close most, if not all, of its brick and mortar stores after filing a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition. The combined effects of a challenging retail environment coupled with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic caused significant financial distress for the company, Hunt Hawkins, CEO, said in a news release. The company lacks sufficient liquidity to continue operating in the ordinary course of business, and determined that the best strategy to maximize value would be a liquidation of its assets pursuant to an organized going out of business sale, Hawkins said. Stein Mart (Nasdaq: SMRT), based in Jacksonville, operates 281 stores across 30 states, including a store at 218 37th Ave. N. in St. Petersburg. Other local stores are in the Seminole City Center, Northwood Plaza in Clearwater, 33951 U.S. 19 N. in Palm Harbor, Briton Plaza in south Tampa, Lithia Crossing in Valrico and 13210 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Carrollwood. Stein Mart is evaluating any and all strategic alternatives, including the potential sale of its e-commerce business and related intellectual property, the news release said.