Frankfort, Ill.-based Gas City Ltd., a chain of independent gas stations founded and owned by William McEnery, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection late Tuesday, Crain’s Chicago Business reported.
Founded in 1966, Gas City includes 51 gas stations located mainly in the south suburbs of Chicago, but also in Indiana, Arizona and Florida, and listed assets between $50 million and $100 million and estimated liabilities between $100 million and $500 million.
Gas City plans to sell its gas stations and the properties they sit on as rapidly as possible, according to filings in the case. The stations are expected generate revenue of $450 million this year and earnings before interest, depreciation, amortization and rent of about $18 million, Crain’s Chicago Business noted.
“We have many parties that have expressed serious interest in these assets,” Mark Thomas, an attorney for Gas City said Wednesday when he appeared before U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Eugene Wedoff.
The sale of the gas stations, however, is reportedly unlikely to generate enough to satisfy the lenders. Sources told Crain’s Chicago Business McEnery’s businesses owe about $365 million to 17 banks. The bankruptcy petition identifies about $285 million owed to the banks by Gas City and the trust controlled by McEnery, which owns most of the land the stations occupy.