July 27, 2020
Stokes Inc., a Montreal, Quebec-based leading tableware, kitchenware, and home décor retailer with 147 stores across Canada, had its NOI proceedings continued under the CCAA on July 27. The company owes approximately $11.4 million in liabilities, including $2.5 million (USD) to Scotiabank. Founded in 1935, the company attributes its financial difficulties to adverse macro-trends such as changing consumer preferences, expensive leases, and a general shift away from brick-and-mortar to online retail channels. In addition, increased competition from discount and online retailers has exerted significant downward pressure on pricing and margins. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the company requires additional time to complete a liquidation sale for its stores and formulate a proposal for creditors. However, it has become evident that the company will not be able to do so before the expiry of the 6-month period following the filing of the NOI. Richter was appointed monitor. Counsel is Osler for the company, Stikeman Elliott for the monitor, and Kugler Kandestin for Scotiabank.