Material World: Zombie Brands Are Hard to Kill

Every other week, hosts Jenny Kaplan and Lindsey Rupp guide you through the consumer universe, breaking down what's going on with all the things people buy.

The holidays are upon us, and with them a shopping season that can make or break a struggling retailer. Yet bankruptcy doesn't always mean the end. Many struggling chains linger well past their expiration dates and others find second lives under new ownership. The deciding factor is the strength of the brand.

Join us as Lindsey and Jenny explain the bankruptcy process -- and why some brands survive while others don't. Jamie Salter tells us why he bought Aeropostale, the teen apparel chain, four months after it filed for bankruptcy in May. Bazillion Points book publisher Ian Christe describes his conflict with Borders, the bookseller that went out of business in 2011. Ryan Cotton, a managing director at Bain Capital Private Equity, explores what sets successful brands apart, while Bloomberg's Lauren Coleman-Lochner breaks down the mechanics of filing for bankruptcy.


To contact the authors of this story: Lindsey Rupp in New York at, Jennifer Kaplan in New York at