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ATLANTA-Rhodes Inc., struggling to restructure its 125-year-old retail furniture operations, has received final approval from the US Bankruptcy Court here on its $88 million credit facility obtained from Wells Fargo Retail Finance and Back Bay Capital Funding. The funding term expires May 4, 2006.

Combined with the locally based company’s cash from operations, the $88 million is expected to provide funding for Rhodes’ operations during the Chapter 11 process, according to Steven S. Fishman, CEO, chief restructuring officer and president of Rhodes Inc. “This is an important milestone in enabling Rhodes to reorganize and emerge as a strong, viable furniture retailer,” Fishman says in a statement.

The Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Georgia previously gave Rhodes permission to sell off an estimated 1.2 million sf of retail space in 21 of its stores and warehouses and three John M. Smyth’s Homemakers Furniture stores located in nine states. The properties range in size from 27,809 sf to 113,250 sf.

The company has retained DJM Asset Management of Melville, NY to dispose of the properties but the court still has to approve DJM’s role in the assignment, as GlobeSt.com previously reported. In metro Atlanta, Rhodes plans to close stores at 4363 NE Express Access Rd. in suburban Doraville, GA and at 4715 Ashford Dunwoody Road near the Perimeter Mall. The company will continue operating 12 other area stores.

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