Tupperware, in dire straits, seeks financing to stay afloat

Tupperware Brands, which experienced a resurgence during the pandemic, is now pursuing investors to keep it afloat and is in danger of being delisted by the New York Stock Exchange.

Shares of Tupperware Brands Corp. tumbled nearly 50% on Monday after the company said late last week that it had engaged financial advisers to help it secure financing and “remediate its doubts regarding its ability to continue as a going concern.”

Sales and profits have steadily fallen the past couple of years after the pandemic breathed new life into the Orlando, Florida-based maker of food storage containers. Early in March, Tupperware posted a 24 cents-per-share loss for the fourth quarter, rattling investors who were expecting a profit of 22 cents per share.

Sales, which climbed during the pandemic as people stayed home and cooked for themselves, have tumbled from nearly $500 million in the fourth quarter of 2020 to just over $300 million in its most recent fourth quarter.

The company last week received a non-compliance notice from the NYSE for failing to file its annual results with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Last month’s preliminary results released to investors showed it lost around $35 million in the fourth quarter.

Tupperware has six months from the filing due date to regain compliance, though the NYSE can begin the process of delisting the stock at own discretion.

Analysts say that creditors could potentially call Tupperware on its debt, which the company is unlikely to be able to repay.

Chasen Bender, an analyst with Citi, said Tupperware’s creditors appear to be giving the company a 30-day grace period until the 10-K is filed. Bender added that even though the company says it is working toward finalizing the filing, “the path forward appears highly uncertain.”

Tupperware said it is considering selling some real estate holdings and other non-core assets to free up cash.

Tupperware, which had explosive growth in the mid 20th century, was well-known for its Tupperware Party, first held in 1948. But it sputtered in the years leading up to the pandemic. Prior to the pandemic resurgence, Tupperware had negative sales growth for three consecutive years, according to FactSet.

Shares in Tupperware were up about 9% early Tuesday, to $1.35 per share. The company’s stock traded above $4 early this year and was close to $40 per share at the beginning of 2021.

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