ASHWAUBENON — Wisconsin-based retail chain Shopko Stores has filed for bankruptcy protection as it makes plans to close more stores.
The company says excessive debt and ongoing competitive pressure are forcing it to seek protection from creditors. Shopko is reporting assets of less than $1 billion and liabilities of between $1 billion and $10 billion.
Shopko says it plans to continue operating through Chapter 11 reorganization after securing $480 million in financing from a group of lenders led by Wells Fargo Bank. The financing will allow Shopko to continue to pay employees, vendors and suppliers.
The retailer, headquartered near Green Bay, says it will close 38 more stores. Last month, it announced plans to close about 40 of its more than 300 stores across the country.
“This decision is a difficult, but necessary one,” said Russ Steinhorst, Chief Executive Officer. “In a challenging retail environment, we have had to make some very tough choices, but we are confident that by operating a smaller and more focused store footprint, we will be able to build a stronger Shopko that will better serve our customers, vendors, employees and other stakeholders through this process.”
Below is a list of Shopko stores closing in Wisconsin:
Shopko released the following information in a press release:
In order to position the Company for future success, Shopko has announced that it will be closing an additional 38 stores, relocating over 20 Optical centers to freestanding locations, and conducting an auction process for its pharmacy business. Throughout this process, all Shopko Optical centers and pharmacies remain open and continue to deliver the high-quality products and services to which its customers are accustomed. All other stores remain open as the Company continues to optimize its store footprint. Parties interested in receiving additional information about the Company’s pharmacy auction process should send inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, encouraged by the performance of the four freestanding Optical centers that were opened in 2018, Shopko plans to continue to grow its optical business by opening additional freestanding Optical locations during 2019.
Shopko is also filing customary first day motions that, once approved by the court, will allow the Company to smoothly transition its business into Chapter 11, including, among other things, granting authority to pay wages, salaries, benefits, and pay vendors and suppliers in the ordinary course for authorized goods and services provided on or after the filing date.