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Bob’s Stores closing all locations after 70 years in latest US retail casualty

Bob’s Stores, the beloved store that has clothed families across the northeast for 70 years, will permanently shut its doors at all its locations in the US’s latest retail casualty.
The iconic retail giant was “unable to secure the finances needed to maintain operations,” president Dave Barton announced on Monday.
Bob’s Stores will liquidate its inventory at its 21 locations throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island — offering discounts between 30 and 70 percent leading up to the store’s closure on July 14.
“We regret that our financial position necessitated the liquidation of Bob’s Stores,” Barton said. “Bob’s has been a stalwart of our local communities for nearly 70 years, and we know our customers remember us as having been there for major moments in their lives.”
3 Bob’s Stores is closing its 21 US locations on July 14 after it was unable to secure the finances needed to maintain operations. David P. Willis/Asbury Park Press / USA TODAY NETWORK
The store, which has 13 locations in the New York tri-state area alone, specializes in “footwear, workwear, teamwear and everyday clothing” for families. One New York location, based in Centereach on Long Island, celebrated its grand opening just this past December.
“We remain grateful to our vendors, suppliers, customers and employees for all of their support over the years,” Barton added.
On June 20, Barton filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection under Bob’s Stores and its sister company Eastern Mountain Sports, which employs 290 full-time and 481 part-time workers.
According to the court filing, both companies share a headquarters and distribution center in Meriden, Conn.
In May, parent company GoDigital Media Group abruptly laid off 150 workers at the facility when it opted to “operate from their larger stores and remotely” over an “aggressive” restructuring process.
3 Bob’s Stores specializes in “footwear, workwear, teamwear and everyday clothing” Bob’s Stores
Barton claimed both Bob’s Stores and Eastern Mountain Sports generated $131.85 million in net revenue during the 2023 calendar year.
However, PNC Bank alleged it is owed nearly $30 million plus an additional $27 million in unpaid rent and operational debt.
The companies also accrued $935,000 in unpaid wage obligations, according to the petition.
The store’s website is listed as “under construction” with a message of a future “enhanced online shopping experience.”
Entrepreneur Bob Lapidus started Bob’s Stores — then known as Bob’s Surplus — as a small shop in Middletown, Conn in 1954. The retailer expanded to more than 35 stores throughout the Northeast before it was hit with a series of bankruptcy filings.
3 Bob’s Stores started in Connecticut and expanded to more than 30 stores throughout the Northeast. Newsday via Getty Images
Retail chains are closing nearly 3,200 stores this year — a 24 percent increase from 2023, according to an analysis from CoreSight Research.
In May, supermarket Stop and Stop closed numerous stores across the northeast citing underperformance while seafood restaurant Red Lobster shut its doors to at least 50 of its locations and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

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