• The Star Staff

Vitamins giant GNC files for bankruptcy


By The Star Staff


GNC Puerto Rico Holdings Inc. and GNC Puerto Rico LLC, which have vitamin stores in Puerto Rico, have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.


The filing is part of a bankruptcy process that began Tues- day for the entire GNC franchise in the mainland United States and in other countries.The company listed between $1 billion to $10 billion in liabilities. It also listed more than 100,000 creditors. GNC Holdings Inc. said it plans to close at least 800 to 1,200 stores.


The Pittsburgh-based chain, which had approximately 5,200 retail locations in the U.S. and 7,300 locations globally as of March 31, said the coronavirus pandemic accelerated the need to file for bankruptcy protection after being under “financial pressure for the past several years.” “The COVID-19 pandemic created a situation where we

Harbin Pharmaceutical Group Holding Co. Ltd., GNC’s largest shareholder.


The company termed the restructuring as dual-track, leading either to a standalone recovery or through a sale process. GNC said it had begun a marketing process for the business and the sale could be implemented instead were unable to accomplish our refinancing and the abrupt change in the operating environment had a dramatic negative impact on our business,” it said on its website. In a statement, GNC said it has reached an agreement with its key stakeholders “to pursue a dual-path process that will allow the Company to restructure its balance sheet and accelerate its business strategy through Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.”


The Pittsburgh Business Times said GNC had reached a deal with some of its secured lenders for $130 million in financing and it would continue operations through the bankruptcy process and work toward a prearranged reorganization plan by a number of its creditors. GNC also announced it had reached an agreement in principle for the $760 million sale of the company with the agree- ment of a “significant majority” of secured lenders and Harbin Pharmaceutical Group Holding Co. Ltd., GNC’s largest shareholder.


The company termed the restructuring as dual-track, leading either to a standalone recovery or through a sale process. GNC said it had begun a marketing process for the business and the sale could be implemented instead of emerging from bankruptcy, the publication said.

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