WC Woods, OEM supplier of freezers to North America’s most famous appliance brands, closed its doors forever, Monday November 15. Evidently the original plan to sell the business by Thanksgiving has fallen through.
While we hope to have details to you on this story, let’s revisit how we reached this point.
December 2005: WC Woods reaches agreement with Whirlpool to manage their entire branded freezer business.
December 2007: Woods family sells WC Woods to Mitsubishi’s Private Equity Arm
May 2009: WC Woods declares bankruptcy in Canada and the US
November 2009: WC Woods to be sold
UPDATE Nov 17: Liquidation of Assets CORRECTION
Our first swing at what just happened.
One Rock Capital Partners LLC (who the hell are they??) agreed to buy WC Woods on October 28 predicated on the due diligence which was required to be completed by November 27.
One Rock backed out.
INCORRECT: Electrolux North America placed the high bid for the assets of WC Woods in liquidation, which was held by the court in the event that One Rock backed out. This is our reading of the documents, and we reserve the right to be completely incorrect in our understanding.
CORRECTION: Electrolux ACTUALLY has not yet placed its bid, and when it does it will be competing with other bidders. Electrolux was actually fighting for the opportunity to be able to bid for the assets. No idea why they might have been originally restricted from bidding.
We continue trying to figure out what happened. Feel free to follow the link below and lend us a hand with the legal docs.
UPDATE Nov 17: WC Woods Letter to Trade Partners
WC WOODS CORPORATION LETTERHEAD
November 17th, 2009
Dear Trade Partners,
Allfurther contact for W.C. Wood Corporation, Inc should be forwarded to BDO
It has been a pleasure servicing you. I believe I speak for all the former W.C. Wood employees when say thank you for you patronage over the years. It has truly been an honor being associated with you and your organization.
Vice President of Sales
W. C. Wood Corporation
UPDATE: Nov 19: What have we learned
One Rock was required to meet three conditions, but was unable to line up one of those conditions, $500,000. $1/2 million dollars they couldn’t line up?
One Rock is in fact Ripplewood Holdings, who you may remember was in the running for Maytag but failed to close that deal as well.
One Rock requested 2 additional weeks to put their financing together, but the judge and creditors refused. Refused? What the heck do we not know? We don’t know something, because something doesn’t make sense.
The banks involved were CIT US, CIT Canada, and Bank of Montreal.
WC Woods had 800 employees in Canada and Ohio.
UPDATE: Nov 20: Whirlpool says stuff and doesn’t say stuff
“As you may have heard, W.C. Wood Corporation, Inc., is in liquidation. When business interruptions like this occur, it is Whirlpool Corporation’s standard practice to inspect and evaluate equipment, processes and inventory to help ensure we continue to meet the needs of trade customers and consumers. Whirlpool Corporation will not comment publically on our licensing agreement with W.C. Wood and will not speculate about the liquidation of the company and its assets.”