Final Sales to Begin at 143 Sports Authority Stores
By Karla Bowsher
Sports Authority won court approval Thursday to begin final sales at stores that are slated to close.
The store closings will happen over the next three months, the retailer said in a website announcement Wednesday.
Court approval of Sports Authority's proposal to close 143 stores came one day after the company filed the proposal as part of a petition for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 of the U.S. bankruptcy code.
By filing under Chapter 11, Sports Authority has the option to restructure its business to be able to pay down debts, rather than to liquidate the entire business.
The privately held company explained in its online statement, which is signed by Michael Foss, Sports Authority's chief executive officer:
We have decided to utilize the Chapter 11 process to implement a financial and operational restructuring that we believe is necessary to help us become an even better place for our customers to shop for sporting goods.
Due to the changing retail environment, we have a long-term plan to streamline and strengthen our business so we can continue to make necessary investments in our operations, including upgrading our in store experience and enhancing our website. As part of that plan, we have identified approximately 140 stores that we intend to close or sell in the coming months.
The 143 stores slated to close are located in the following 26 states and Puerto Rico.
Each closing store's complete address is available in the court document filed Wednesday. In total, Sports Authority had more than 450 stores across 41 states, according to its website.
The retailer also notes on its website that "customers should not be affected" by the restructuring:
Were you surprised by the news of Sports Authority's filing for bankruptcy, or by the number of stores slated to close? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.