KPS buys Lenox assets out of bankruptcy

The New York-based distressed investment firm was the ‘highest qualified bidder’ for assets of the iconic US china company. KPS agreed in January to buy assets from fellow bankrupt china and crystal maker Waterford Wedgwood.

KPS Capital Partners, a distressed investment and turnaround-focused private equity firm, has won a bankruptcy auction to buy 120-year-old china maker Lenox. 

Lenox has made custom china ware for hundreds of US government residences and officials including the White House, while its standard patterns are found in many US homes.  

Along with the purchase price, which has not been disclosed, KPS provided Lenox with enough capital to meet its liquidity needs once it exits bankruptcy without having to seek a third-party lender for additional financing.

Lenox: KPS target

KPS was the “highest qualified bidder” with the “greatest certainly of closing”, Lenox chief executive Marc Pfefferle said in a statement.

The deal still needs approval by the US bankruptcy court.

Lenox filed for Chapter 11 protection in November amid declining revenue and falling retail sales in the US.

KPS agreed to buy assets from the china and crystal maker Waterford Wedgwood, which was put into administration in January.

The New York-based firm is investing from its $1.2 billion KPS Special Situations Fund III, which closed in June 2007. The firm was founded by former investment bankers Michael Psaros, Eugene Keilan and David Shapiro in 1997.

KPS went through a restructuring in 2005 following the departure of principal Stephen Presser and four others, who left the firm to form rival distressed specialist Monomoy Capital Partners.