GNC seeks debt breathing room, retail loses muscle

For GNC Holdings, it seemed like a good idea at the time: a $500 million share repurchase plan, when borrowing money was cheap and the supplement business was booming. That buyback, kicked off in November 2013, turned out to be mistimed. Within weeks, shares of the purveyor of vitamins and testosterone-boosters hit an all-time peak. Pressure from rivals including online retailers like Amazon.com punished the company’s bottom line in the years to come. Same-store sales plummeted. Now, GNC wants m...

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