As a necessary part of its restructuring and eventual plans to restart operations, Cirque du Soleil says it has announced "critical steps" related to employees, including the termination of employment of approximately 3,480 employees who had been previously furloughed in March.
"For the past 36 years, Cirque du Soleil has been a highly successful and profitable organization", said Daniel Lamarre, CEO of Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group in a release.
The Quebec government's investment and lending arm, Investissement Quebec, is providing US$200 million of the US$300 million in new capital proposed by the TPG-led group.
Montreal-based circus arts show company temporarily suspended its productions around the world in March because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Cirque entered into a so-called stalking horse purchase agreement with its shareholders - TPG, Shanghai-based Fosun International Ltd. and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec - for a United States $300 million injection of liquidity. They will also receive repayment of a $50 million interim loan.
The company will now try to restructure while shedding about 95% of its staff.
Its said the sponsors´ bid includes an intent to rehire a substantial majority of the terminated employees, business conditions allowing, when its operations can resume.
Cirque said it will seek protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA), and its application will be heard on Tuesday by the Superior Court of Quebec.
It has almost US$1.6 billion in liabilities.
Cirque du Soleil shows in Austin, Chicago, Houston, New Orleans, Salt Lake City, Montreal, Boston, Tel Aviv, Meloneras in Spain, Munich, Costa Mesa, California, Denver and the Australian cities of Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth were also cancelled.