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Court OKs Sleepy's purchase of Better Bedding

Unclear if 10-store chain will remain open

HARTFORD, Conn. — A U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge has approved the sale of mattress specialty chain Better Bedding to Top 100 retailer Sleepy's.

Better Bedding, which operates 10 stores in Connecticut, was sold to Sleepy's for $965,000, according to an order signed today by Judge Albert Dabrowski. It was not immediately clear if Sleepy's will keep the stores open.

A court-supervised auction was held Wednesday, but no other qualified offers were received, according to court documents.

Better Bedding has been operating under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection since March 2009.

The retailer had submitted a reorganization plan and disclosure statement in December that would have kept the company operating independently and paid unsecured creditors over a three-year period.

However, days before a January hearing on the disclosure statement, the unsecured creditors committee, headed by mattress producer Sealy, told Dabrowski the committee had received a purchase offer from Sleepy's. Over the objections of Better Bedding, the committee then withdrew its support for the original reorganization plan and backed the Sleepy's offer.

According to documents filed with the court, the original plan would have paid a larger portion of unsecured creditors claims, but the payout would have been over a longer period of time. Today's order did not specify what percentage of claims would be paid.

Sleepy's is the nation's largest mattress specialty chain with approximately 690 stores. The retailer had sales of $700 million last year, according to Furniture/Today estimates.

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