Briggs & Stratton face bankruptcy according to report

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According to a report in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel this week, Briggs & Stratton faces a 15th July deadline in efforts to avoid bankruptcy.

Todd Teske, chairman, president and CEO of Briggs & Stratton

The newspaper says the company "..has been slammed by plummeting sales from the COVID-19 pandemic, foreign competition and dried-up capital markets for refinancing debt and selling assets."

The report cites S&P Global Ratings which says that as of 31st December, the company had net debt of $581 million and faced an "increasing likelihood" of a default or restructuring.

Analyst Tom Hayes from Northcoast Research said in a June 19 note to investors, quoted by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "We expect the next 30 days will prove challenging for Briggs as it looks to find some foothold before potentially falling into bankruptcy or some other drastic reorganisation."

"Briggs would likely need, at bare minimum, to have a deal in place to sell off the identified turf business assets to stave off an accelerated bankruptcy filing," Hayes continued in the article. "If Briggs can show some progress on the asset sale, it may allow some chance of working with the current bondholders, on either a workaround or a more predefined bankruptcy proceeding."

The local Milwaukee newspaper says that Briggs & Stratton executives declined to be interviewed for their article. In a written statement provided to them, the company said it was "attempting to sell certain businesses and assets to shore up its balance sheet and focus on its core strength of building small engines and focusing on new products such as Lithium-ion batteries".

You can read the whole, detailed article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which covers the history of Briggs & Stratton in Wisconsin as well as recent developments, here.

This story follows the news that the company skipped a recent $6.7M interest payment but awarded executives millions. Todd Teske, chairman, president and CEO of Briggs & Stratton is pictured above.

It was also recently reported that the company planned to move production to New York. A development which the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, in a separate story, says will lead to the cutting of more than 200 jobs locally.

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