Winn-Dixie Stores Inc has filed its proposed plan of reorganization and related disclosure statement with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida. With this filing, Winn-Dixie is positioned to emerge from Chapter 11 protection as soon as late October.
The Jacksonville FL-based supermarket chain expects to emerge from its reorganization with sufficient financing and liquidity to invest in its current store base, open new stores, and position the business to compete effectively over the next several years. The company also expects to emerge with only a small amount of long-term debt.
Winn-Dixie also has received a commitment for up to $725 million in exit financing from Wachovia Bank. The financing, which will replace the current debtor-in-possession (DIP) credit facility on the date that a plan of reorganization takes effect, will increase Winn-Dixie’s cash availability substantially. The financing is subject to customary conditions.
The supermarket chain has reported improved financial results and sales growth recently. For the quarters ended Jan 11, 2006, and April 15, 2006, the company reported year-over-year increases in identical store sales of 7.3% and 6.7%, respectively.