KOFO Local News

ALCO retail chain to be liquidated

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on November 25, 2014

GARNETT – Discount retailer ALCO announced Friday that it is closing all 198 stores, including the store in Garnett. The Garnett store said it is conducting a going-out-of-business sale. The announcement came a day after  a U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Dallas approved a plan by three holding companies – Tiger Capital Group, SB Capital Group and Great American Group – to sell the the 113-year-old retail chain’s holdings, including its distribution center in Abilene, to a “stalking horse” liquidation firm. During the liquidation sale, the company plans to sell $260 million of inventory, fixtures and equipment. According to the Wall Street Journal, ALCO filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy after the board of directors was replaced following a proxy fight in which key shareholders demanded a reversal of lagging sales. ALCO had operated stores, mostly in smaller rural communities mostly in the Midwest, to avoid head-to-head competition with larger discount chains, such as Wal-Mart and Target. However, in recent recent years, ALCO said in its bankruptcy papers that it couldn’t escape the effects of the on-going economic distress affecting much of the U.S. In its filing, ALCO said many of its customers are living on fixed or low incomes in rural areas – those especially hard-hit by the long-running and lingering recession.  The chain originally started in Abilene as a small five-and-dime store called Duckwall’s, which expanded to other small communities. The company later added ALCO stores. The last Duckwall’s was closed in Hettinger, N.D., four years ago. After a series of ownership changes and and after one Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, the corporate headquarters was moved from Kansas to Coppell, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, a year and a half ago. The closing will end approximately 3,000 retail jobs nation-wide.
Tuesday, Nov. 25, 10 a.m.

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