Loot Crate files for Bankruptcy

Loot Crate

Loot Crate

While the news cycle has been largely tied up in CBS-and-Viacom-shaped knots, another small story has slipped a bit under the radar.

The LA Times reported earlier this week that subscription box company Loot Crate has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company is known for its themed boxes filled with nerdy collectibles and other products, which are shipped to more than a quarter of a million subscribers on a recurring basis.

In a court declaration filed in Wilmington, Delaware, Chief Restructuring Officer Stuart Kaufman said that Loot Crate failed to ship goods from $20 million of sales, the company owes $30 million in trade debt, and that it’s behind on nearly $6 million of sales taxes.

The filing may not come as a surprise to Star Trek fans. The highly-anticipated Trek-themed “Mission Crate” started with a special “Wolf 359” edition back in 2017, which was meant to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the premiere of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Over the next several iterations of the Mission Crate, they were plagued by delays and out of stocks, and eventually cancelled and refunded outstanding crates in January of this year.

So what’s next for Loot Crate? Syfy Wire reported on Tuesday that Loot Crate CEO Chris Davis said in a press release, “After careful review of a wide range of available options, management determined that a sale of the Company is in the best interests of all parties, including our valued Looters (customers) and employees."

In the short-term, normal operations will continue, funded by ongoing subscription revenue and $10m in new financing from one of the company’s existing investors. Further details are expected after court filings later this week.

Alison Pitt