Napa's COPIA may be defunct

April L. Dowd photo

From the San Francisco Business News:

A U.S. bankruptcy court judge has rejected Napa (CA) food and wine center COPIA’s attempt to line up an emergency $2 million line of credit, a ruling that appears to spell the end of the Napa non-profit, which has about $80 million in debts.

The 7-year-old company, seen by many as a failed attempt to take advantage of Napa’s food and wine culture, was initially bankrolled by the late wine industry icon Robert Mondavi.

“At this time, it is highly unlikely that COPIA will continue in any form other than to orderly wind down operations,” CFO Joe Fischer said in a recent e-mail reported by the Napa Valley Register. The San Francisco Business Times was unable to reach officials for comment.

Copia shut its doors in late November, and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Dec. 1.

Its bond insurer, ACA Financial Guaranty Corp., and bond trustee Bank of New York Mellon objected to the line of credit request, according to a report Wednesday in the Register, one of Copia’s unsecured creditors. As a result of Judge Alan Jaroslovsky’s ruling, the company, also known as the American Center For Wine, Food and the Arts, appears ready to go out of business.

The organization’s bankruptcy filing listed 385 creditors. It reportedly owes $78 million to financial institutions and $2 million to other entities. A bankruptcy court hearing on the matter is scheduled for Dec. 19."

[Go here for my earlier report on the situation.]

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