Garden gnome fans fret: SkyMall files for bankruptcy

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Garden gnome fans fret: SkyMall files for bankruptcy
The company behind SkyMall has declared bankruptcy. According to documents released on Friday, Xhibit Corporation,, which owned SkyMall as well as a series of other subsidiaries, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, The Phoenix, Arizona based company had sold an assortment of products through the its magazine-style catalogue that could be found in the seatback of almost every airline flight in the U.S.
Oh, man - NOW what are we gonna do on flights?? America Enters Its Darkest Days: SkyMall Lands in Bankruptcy http://t.co/kaJ2kz3Ijf
With no SkyMall on planes, how else will people avoid awkward conversations with the person next to them?
Travel would legitimately not be the same without #SkyMall http://t.co/4DmufFjgCb http://t.co/DwLMGv1nNH
This Skymall bankruptcy news got me like http://t.co/54NXFDBrWC
SkyMall files for bankruptcy. RIP, purveyor of gadgets you don't need but inexplicably desire. http://t.co/d5rHADfSYG http://t.co/UWZ5RzCp5Z
My father-in-law will be devastated about SkyMall. He ordered 25 bonsai trees from them last year.
I have no idea why Skymall isn't raking in the $$$ with products like these: http://t.co/l2js1FIJKS http://t.co/cJc4A3OatQ
Not if someone buys this yeti RT @KatyStech: BREAKING: The SkyMall catalog has filed for bankruptcy. Details to come. http://t.co/OoFUNLEnpT
Without Skymall where would I get beautiful elephant wall sconces? http://t.co/jQvW5Mk22y http://t.co/Qjxz0J9buf
Among Skymall’s many contributions to mankind…. http://t.co/lIhaqVCo0Z http://t.co/wEqLk6322c
Without @SkyMall, where will we find all of life's little necessities? http://t.co/ItjxRc8w8c
**BREAKING** SkyMall files for bankruptcy ... How could that happen with such simplistic products as these? http://t.co/b3ejTr0IQr
I will miss you so much SkyMall. http://t.co/rVJvrdNTNJ
Man. MT @SBNation: Nooooo SkyMall has filed for bankruptcy. It had the best sports stuff: http://t.co/tFNYgAHrHz http://t.co/aLUriGU1Fu
should i start a http://t.co/Xtqgnmxn74 petition to keep Skymall's "Serenity Cat Pod" alive y/n http://t.co/vaLDzBKSFS
What the hell is SkyMall?
As @SkyMall Files for Bankruptcy, let’s all just take a moment to appreciate their most ridiculous product ever http://t.co/jXvdH0PR6B
I'm so pissed I never bought that real expensive thing no one needs. RIP Skymall http://t.co/4TR7fDO4xC
What!? #SkyMall files for bankruptcy. Now where will I get a litter robot for only $359.99? http://t.co/dYU35ZYLcM http://t.co/1OeXZIkRoY
Oh dear-SkyMall went Bankrupt! I better still get my Jesus Risen Statue with His serene gaze! http://t.co/s9eqKZH4ws http://t.co/EJoLJD2CkI
now that #Skymall has filed for bankruptcy, do you think the value of our #Drunk #Cat lithograph will appreciate? http://t.co/hbdxNQyA1I
RIP skymall you were too beautiful for this world http://t.co/aG4QTXZH0y http://t.co/XfZGpR5URP
I can't believe Skymall went bankrupt RIGHT before I finally purchased the Sumo table of my dreams. http://t.co/YDtLweOaEE
:( Now where will I get my $1,000 garden giraffes? | @SkyMall catalog files for bankruptcy. http://t.co/pXCYDDqBS4 http://t.co/Ph184HObfJ
#rip skymall. How am I going to waste 5 runway minutes now?
Farewell, Skymall. May your Dancing Ducks welcome you to your next location in the publishing sky. http://t.co/zpv0C8IL6M
@SklarBrothers now that Skymall is filing for bankruptcy, how is my dog going to jostle my drink when I watch tv? http://t.co/9Ha5HB2Q6p
@HPbasketball @mashable @SkyMall Where will I get my $299 officially licensed miniature bean bag chairs now!?
grab ur beer mitt's and pour one out for Skymall today http://t.co/ImLpA3hum8
SkyMall files for bankruptcy? Are you saying no one bought a Shark submarine for $85K? That's exactly it? Makes sense http://t.co/cqXZOfQTGU
Forget Silicon Valley, SkyMall is where real innovation comes from http://t.co/eFafKE9JZb
The existential dread watch tolls for SkyMall. http://t.co/mXsyAXOEu5
i dont want to live in a world where these kind of jokes cant be made :( #RIP #Skymall #TomHaverford #ParksandRec http://t.co/i3IKYntDp8
SkyMall filed for bankruptcy?! Crossing my fingers I can buy this before it's too late. http://t.co/mLyt7N9WKv
Skymall going bankrupt? Now how am I going to order my iPad Spider Bed Holder? http://t.co/w7wZO1EfOk
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NEW YORK (AP) -- Apparently, airline passengers aren't buying enough garden gnomes, superhero pajamas and heated cat shelters. SkyMall has filed for bankruptcy.

The quirky in-flight shopping catalog has been a mainstay on airlines for more than three decades. Passengers with nowhere to go would pull it from the seatback and flip through the pages. While flying high over Iowa, they could dream about owning a $16,000 multisensory home sauna or maybe just a grill spatula with a built-in flashlight for $29.95.

But in recent years, passengers have found other distractions. More planes have seatback TV screens. The federal government now allows us to keep Kindles and iPads on during the entire flight. And most jets in the U.S. now have Wi-Fi meaning passengers can chat with friends back home or actually do work.

"Nobody's bored anymore. They don't have a captive audience," says John DiScala, who runs the travel advice site JohnnyJet.com "Not only is it full of germs but travelers today have all the information they need at their fingertips."

So Thursday, SkyMall's parent company, Phoenix, Arizona-based Xhibit Corp., filed for Chapter 11 protection in U.S. bankruptcy court. In the filing, the company said it has $1 million to $10 million in assets but $10 million to $50 million in liabilities.

Its biggest creditors are airlines. The company owes American Airlines $1.6 million, Delta Air Lines $1.5 million, Southwest Airlines $400,000 and United Airlines $300,000. It also has debts with UPS, specialty retailer Hammacher Schlemmer and American Express.

Many companies - including airlines - emerge from bankruptcy to survive for many more years. SkyMall must find a way to stay relevant to passengers who are no longer a captive audience. It will also need to convince airlines to keep filling their planes with the magazine. Fewer airline seats now have seatback pockets to hold a magazine. And airlines are much more aware of the added fuel cost for carrying the heavy publication - a recent holiday version had 170 pages.

Delta stopped carrying the magazine in the fall.

Over the years, SkyMall has taken on a cult-like following. Travel news website Gadling, for instance, used to have a SkyMall Monday feature, highlighting some of the more unusual items for sale.

If the magazine were to shut down, there's nothing else to fill that niche. The beauty of SkyMall - after all - is that it highlights items passenger never thought they needed. Where else can you order a remote controlled tarantula while flying at 35,000 feet?
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