Cirque du Soleil is filing for bankruptcy protection after months of closure at the hands of COVID-19.
The circus’ revenue was completely devastated by the pandemic, resulting in dozens of its productions being cancelled across the world.
The entertainment company says the Quebec Superior Court will hear its application for bankruptcy protection on Tuesday, and it will seek bankruptcy protection in the US, per Cirque’s press release.
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“For the past 36 years, Cirque du Soleil has been a highly successful and profitable organization,” says Daniel Lamarre, president and CEO of Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group. “However, with zero revenues since the forced closure of all of our shows due to COVID-19, management had to act decisively to protect the Company’s future.”
Lamarre says the Purchase Agreement and SISP provide a “path for Cirque to emerge from CCAA protection as a stronger Company.” He continued to say the commitment from the sponsors — which includes additional funds to support impacted employees, contractors, and critical partners — reflects the company’s long-term potential of the brand. “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,” he concluded.
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Under the terms of the proposed Purchase Agreement, the sponsors will inject US$300 million of liquidity into the business’ restructure to help a successful restart by providing relief for Cirque du Soleil’s affected employees, partners, and current ticket holders.
As a necessary part of its restructuring and eventual plans to restart operations, Cirque du Soleil says it has announced “critical steps” related to employees, including the termination of employment of approximately 3,480 employees who had been previously furloughed in March.