The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. is about to join an ever-growing list of retailers that have shut their doors permanently.
The Milwaukee-based company went on the auction block, this week, and the winning bid was submitted by Great American Group, LLC and Tiger Capital Group, LLC to purchase all of the company’s assets, and the sale was approved by a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge Wednesday.
The Bon-Ton Store’s website and mobile apps, including under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers, will remain open throughout the court-supervised asset sale process, the company confirmed in a Tuesday press release.
“While we are disappointed by this outcome and tried very hard to identify bidders interested in operating the business as a going concern, we are committed to working constructively with the winning bidder to ensure an orderly wind-down of operations that minimizes the impact of this development on our associates, customers, vendors and the communities we serve,” said Bill Tracy, president and chief executive officer. “We are incredibly grateful to all of our associates for their dedicated service to Bon-Ton and to our millions of loyal customers who we have had the pleasure to serve as their hometown store for more than 160 years.”
In February, Bon-Ton Stores filed for bankruptcy.
Western New York customers are reacting with sadness and disappointment to the closure. Bon-Ton bought out the old Adams, Meldrum, and Anderson department store chain in 1994. AM&A’s was based in Buffalo.
Roberta Davis, of Buffalo, was a longtime customer of both stores, “It is going to be a loss for me. I’ve been shopping with Bon-Ton for 45 years, since they were AM&A’s downtown. So this will be one less store I will be able to shop at.”
Bon-Ton officials have not set a timetable for the stores’ liquidation, but the new owners are expected to move quickly, with some stores closing sooner than others.
Bon-Ton CEO Bill Tracy is supposed to be sending a letter to all of the company’s 23,000 employees explaining the reasons for the shutdown, and setting an August 31 deadline for Bon-Ton’s final closeout.