Cirque du Soleil seeks creditor protection, but CEO remains optimistic

Daniel Fowler
July 1, 2020

Current Cirque CEO Daniel Lamarre said the company will return stronger, but any transition likely won't happen until the fall.

The company said that it has brought in zero revenue since COVID-19 forced the French-Canadian circus group to shut down all of its performances, including six in Las Vegas and suspend 44 of its live shows internationally back in March. "I look forward to rebuilding our operations and coming together to once again create the magical spectacle that is Cirque du Soleil for our millions of fans worldwide".

The company was forced to shutdown all of its productions due to COVID-19, and it is not yet clear on what the future is of those shows, including the new show at Disney Springs - Drawn to Life.

Almost four months after it suspended its live operations due to the coronavirus pandemic, Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group is filing for bankruptcy.

Cirque du Soleil has now entered into a "stalking horse" bid from private equity backers in the U.S., Canada and China of $420 million that aims at drawing other bidders in an auction.

Travelers from United States Officially Barred from Entering European Union
The country's borders have been closed since mid-March in support of the efforts seeking to contain the spread of COVID-19 . However, Brazil, the United States and China are excluded from the list, BNT reported.

The Texan fund TPG Capital (with a 60 per cent stake), the Chinese firm Fosun (20 per cent) and the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (20 per cent) will inject US$100 million, while Investissement Quebec will provide a US$200-million loan.

Cirque du Soleil has today announced that it has filed for bankruptcy and will terminate 3480 employees who were previously furloughed. However, this does not affect the artists and show staff of the resident shows in Las Vegas and Orlando, as they are expected to resume before the rest of the company's shows elsewhere.

The Montreal-based company, which has about USA $1.6 billion in debt and other liabilities, requested protection through the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act in Canada on Monday afternoon.

The stakeholders and debt provider will acquire "substantially" all of Cirque de Soleil's assets in a deal made up of cash, debt, and equity.

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