Rock & Republic, the Los Angeles-based premium denim brand founded by Michael Ball, who runs it with company president Andrea Bernholtz, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on April 1.

In a recent brief interview with Sportswear International, CEO and creative director Ball said the move was made to protect the brand, which has grown from a jeans-only to a complete women’s and men’s lifestyle collection since it was launched in 2002.

“This was a difficult decision, but was entirely driven by the desire to create a stronger balance sheet structure which will allow the company to focus on and build its core apparel and footwear business,” Ball said. “The Chapter 11 process will provide the opportunity to improve our operations and continue the growth of our brand.”

Regarding present and future restructurings of the business, he said, “We are seeking to restructure Rock & Republic’s financial obligations to provide a more stable financial platform for our future. This will include improving our operational performance and timeliness of shipping orders.”

“Rock & Republic remains a growing brand,” Ball added. “We look forward to emerging from the Chapter 11 process stronger, more focused on our core product lines and with a clear road map to build our brand. We are conducting day-to-day business as usual and will continue to ship orders and service our retailer relationships.”

In addition to its one-year-old standalone store on Robertson Blvd in Los Angeles, the brand is sold worldwide at such major retail accounts as Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom.

—Christopher Blomquist