Bob’s Stores to close all locations after 70 years in latest U.S. retail loss

Bob’s Stores to close all locations after 70 years in latest U.S. retail loss

Bob’s Stores, the beloved department store that has been clothing families across the Northeast for 70 years, will permanently close its doors at all of its locations in the latest retail casualty in the United States.

The retail giant “has been unable to secure the financial resources necessary to continue operations,” President Dave Barton announced Monday.

Bob’s Stores will liquidate its inventory at its 21 locations across Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island — offering discounts ranging from 30 to 70 percent until the store closes on July 14.

“We regret that our financial situation has necessitated the liquidation of Bob’s stores,” Barton said. “Bob’s has been a strong supporter of our local communities for nearly 70 years, and we know our customers remember us for being there for important moments in their lives.”

Bob’s Stores is closing its 21 U.S. locations on July 14 after it was unable to secure the financial resources necessary to continue operations. David B. 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 wear” for families. One New York location, located in Centereach on Long Island, celebrated its grand opening last December.

“We are grateful to our vendors, suppliers, customers and employees for all 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 fileThe two companies share a headquarters and distribution center in Meriden, Connecticut.

In May, parent company GoDigital Media Group abruptly laid off 150 workers at the facility when it opted to “work from its larger stores and remotely” through a “drastic” restructuring.

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Bob’s stores specialize in “footwear, workwear, teamwear, and everyday wear.” Bob’s Shops

Barton claimed that both Bob’s Stores and Eastern Mountain Sports had net revenues of $131.85 million during the 2023 calendar year.

However, PNC Bank claimed it owed about $30 million plus an additional $27 million in unpaid rent and operating debt.

The companies also have accumulated $935,000 in unpaid wage liabilities, according to the petition.

The store’s website is listed as “under construction” with a message of an “improved online shopping experience” in the future.

Entrepreneur Bob Lapidus started Bob’s Stores—then known as Bob’s Surplus—as a small store in Middletown, Connecticut, in 1954. The retailer expanded to more than 35 stores throughout the Northeast before suffering a series of bankruptcy filings.

Bob’s Stores started in Connecticut and has expanded to over 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 by CoreSight Research.

In May, Stop and Stop supermarket closed several stores across the Northeast due to poor performance, while Red Lobster seafood restaurant closed at least 50 locations and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

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