Payless Holdings Committee Taps Pachulski Stang as Lead Counsel

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Payless Holdings, LLC seeks authorization from the US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, Eastern Division, to retain Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP as lead counsel to the Committee.

Professional services to be rendered by PSZ&J are:

a. assist, advise and represent the Committee in its consultations with the Debtors regarding the administration of the cases;

b. assist, advise and represent the Committee in analyzing the Debtors’ assets and liabilities, investigate the extend and validity of liens and participate in and review any proposed asset sales, any asset dispositions, financing agreements and cash collateral stipulations or proceedings;

c. assist, advise, and represent the Committee in any manner relevant to review and determine the Debtors’ rights and obligations under leases and other executory contracts;

d. assist, advise and represent the Committee in investigating the acts, conduct, assets, liabilities and financial condition of the Debtors, the Debtors’ operations and the desirability of the continuance of any portion of those operations and the desirability of the continuance of any portion to those operations, and any other matters relevant to the cases or to the formulation of a plan;

e. assist, advise and represent the Committee in its participation in the negotiation, formulation and drafting of a plan of liquidation or reorganization;

f. advise the Committee on the issues concerning the appointment of a trustee or examiner under Sec. 1104 of the Bankruptcy Code;

g. assist, advise and represent the Committee in understanding its powers and its duties under the Bankruptcy Code and the Bankruptcy Rules and in performing other services as are in the interests of those represented by the Committee;

h. assist, advise and represent the Committee in the evaluation of claims and on any litigation matters, including avoidance actions and claims against directors and officers and any other party; and

i. provide other services to the Committee as may be necessary in the cases.

PSZ&J’s current standard hourly rates are:

Partners $625-$1245
Of Counsel $575-$995
Associates $450-$595
Paraprofessionals $275-$350

Robert J. Feinstein, Esq. attests that neither he, the Firm, nor any partner, of counsel or associate has any connection with the Debtors, their creditors, or any other parties in interest or their respective attorneys and accountants, the US Trustee, or any person employed in the Office if the US Trustee.

In accordance with Appendix B-Guidelines for Reviewing Applications for Compensation and Reimbursement of Expenses Filed under 11 U.S.C. Sec. 330 for Attorneys in Larger Chapter 11 Cases, Robert J. Feinstein disclosed that:

— it has not agreed to any variations from, or alternatives to, its standard or customary billing arrangements for this engagement;

— none of the professionals included in the engagement vary their rate based on the geographic location of the bankruptcy case;

— the firm has not represented the Committee in the 12 months prepetition; and

— PSZ&J is developing a budget and staffing plan that will be presented for approval by the Committee and anticipates filing a Committee-approved budget at the time it files its fee applications.

The Firm can be reached through:

Robert Feinstein, Esq.
PACHULSKI STANG ZIEHL & JONES LLP
780 Third Avenue, 34th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Tel: (212) 561-7700

About Payless Holdings

Payless — http://www.payless.com/ — was founded in 1956 as an everyday footwear retailer. It has more than 4,000 stores in more than 30 countries, and employs approximately 22,000 people. It is headquartered in Topeka, Kansas, but its operations span across Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, Europe, and the United States.

Payless first traded publicly in 1962, and was taken private in May 2012. Payless Holdings, LLC currently owns, directly or indirectly, each of its 91 subsidiaries.

Payless Holdings LLC (Bankr. E.D. Mo. Lead Case No. 17-42267) and its subsidiaries sought protection under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code on April 4, 2017. The petitions were signed by Paul J. Jones, chief executive officer.

At the time of the filing, the Debtors estimated their assets at $500 million to $1 billion and liabilities at $1 billion to $10 billion.

The Debtors hired Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC as restructuring advisor; Prime Clerk LLC as claims, balloting and administrative agent; and Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP as CCAA counsel.

On April 14, 2017, the Office of the U.S. Trustee appointed an official committee of unsecured creditors.

On April 25, 2017, the Debtors filed a disclosure statement, which explains its proposed Chapter 11 plan of reorganization. The Debtors’ plan, if confirmed and implemented, would reduce their debt to $469 million.