Less than a month after announcing it would close more than a dozen stores in the province due to a ‘cash flow crisis,’ Goodwill Industries of Toronto, Eastern, Central, and Northern Ontario said Monday it was seeking bankruptcy protection in an effort to restructure.
In a statement, Keiko Nakamura, CEO of Goodwill Industries TECNO, said an assignment had been filed under Canada’s Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act with the purpose of preserving Goodwill’s assets for its principal creditors, who are collectively the former employees of the corporation.
Around 430 workers were left in limbo on January 17th when Goodwill Industries TECNO said it would be closing 16 stores, 10 donation centres, and two offices located in the Greater Toronto Area, Barrie, Orillia, and Brockville.
“Due to a number of factors affecting the retail environment, Goodwill is facing a cash flow crisis,” said Nakamura in a statement at the time.
In Monday’s statement, Nakamura said Goodwill was contemplating making a proposal to its creditors that, if approved, would annul the bankruptcy, allowing the corporation to reopen some of the shuttered stores.
The Canadian Airport Workers Union, which represents the majority of Goodwill TECNO workers, has said it supports the corporation’s plan, Nakamura said.
Goodwill stores, donation centres, and offices in the London region are not affected by the closures announced last month as each regional Goodwill is governed and operated distinctly.
“Our Goodwill is very strong financially, we are growing,” said Michelle Quintyn, President and CEO of Goodwill Industries Ontario Great Lakes, in an interview with AM980 last month. “We’re very much supported by the generosity of donors across our region. We are just expanding right now in a few areas and have been expanding for the past couple of years.”