Sponsored by Oregon Business

Business bankruptcies increase 67% in 2008

| Print |  Email
Sunday, February 01, 2009

STATEWIDE — Business bankruptcies rose 67% in Oregon in 2008, as the growing financial crisis leaves businesses big and small struggling to stay afloat.


The U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Oregon recorded 405 commercial filings, up from 242 the year prior. And barely one month into the new year, bankruptcy and insolvency lawyers in Portland are already seeing an influx of filings.

“There are a number of things coming together to create an unprecedented situation,” says Perkins Coie partner Douglas Pahl. “It doesn’t feel like a normal cycle.”

While filings of each business bankruptcy chapter rose last year, the increase in organizations seeking Chapter 11 protection is especially notable. Chapter 11 filings rose to 61, nearly triple the 23 filings recorded last year. While protection under Chapter 11 is not limited to businesses and can include individual filings, the clerk’s office estimates that around 90% of the 61 are business filings.

While the recession has left few industries unscathed, the real estate and retail sectors were especially hard hit in 2008. Real estate developers including Renaissance Homes and Legend Homes were just a few to go into Chapter 11. Other businesses tied closely to the industry also felt the ripple effects. Contractors, engineers, and even some lawyers took a hit when Oregon’s major real estate developers sought bankruptcy protection.

Industry experts predict that the growing swell in retail business insolvencies could turn into a full-on flood in 2009. Post-holiday profit drops paired with a slowdown in consumer spending will continue to challenge many retailers’ financial viability.

Tightened credit markets are proving especially troublesome to business owners on the verge of bankruptcy and those already entrenched in reorganization or liquidation proceedings. Debtors are finding it nearly impossible to refinance, sell or find outside parties interested in acquiring their businesses. “The credit markets are not there to provide an alternative,” says Pahl.    

NICOLE STORMBERG



Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

 

More Articles

Power Players

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY ROBERT MULLIN

A new energy-sharing agreement sparks concerns about independence and collaboration in the region's utility industry.


Read more...

The Road to Reinvention

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Damian Smith bets on changing himself — and Portland — through consulting.


Read more...

5 questions about the FLIR FX

The Latest
Wednesday, April 08, 2015
FLIR-FX-IndoorBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

The Wilsonville-based company is targeting GoPro enthusiasts with its latest release. Is spy gear poised to go mainstream?


Read more...

Much ado about data-driven organizations, for good reason

Contributed Blogs
Monday, April 13, 2015
bigdatathumbBY GRANT KIRBY | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

The mega-shift from technology-driven to data-driven organizations raises questions about Oregon’s workforce preparedness.


Read more...

Meeting Facilities Perspective

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A conversation with Donna Earley, director of sales and marketing for the Salem Convention Center.


Read more...

10 quotes explaining crisis at Port of Portland

The Latest
Friday, February 20, 2015
022015 port portland OBM-thumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

The ongoing labor disputes at the Port of Portland came to a head two weeks ago when Hanjin, the container port's largest client, notified its customers it would be ending its direct route to Oregon.


Read more...

Emperor of the Sea

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY COURTNEY SHERWOOD | Photos by Jason E. Kaplan

Pacific Seafood, one of the world’s largest processors, is rebranding as a more transparent and consumer-friendly operation. A controversial CEO and monopoly accusations from coastal fishermen complicate the tale.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS