Published: Fri, March 16, 2018
Money | By Armando Alvarado

Winn-Dixie parent plans to file for bankruptcy, close 94 stores

Winn-Dixie parent plans to file for bankruptcy, close 94 stores

Winn-Dixie parent company Southeastern Grocers will close 94 stores - including six in South Florida - and file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization as it tries to save its struggling grocery business, the company announced Thursday afternoon.

The Harveys on Albemarle Road, for instance, sits close to what is considered a food insecure area, as identified in the 2015 "State of the Plate" report by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Food Policy Council. The closings leave the company, which also operates Fresco and Harveys, with 582 stores.

Southeastern Grocers officials said they conducted a thorough review of options for reducing the company's current debt and have chosen to "voluntarily implement a court-supervised, prepackaged restructuring agreement".

Other South Carolina locations that will be closed to help Southeastern Grocers reduce debt include locations in Anderson, Bamberg, Barnwell, Clemson, Greenville, Greenwood, Ladson, Mount Pleasant, Mullins, Newberry, North Charleston, Seneca, Spartanburg, St. Matthews, Summerville and Warrenville. We have not taken these steps without careful planning and consideration.

The company says it will close 94 "underperforming stores" in the coming days.

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No date was given when the stores will close for good, but the company said it is their goal to emerge from this process within the next 90 days.

This will be the latest in a series of bankruptcy filings, closures and layoffs for the struggling grocery store chain since 2005.

Southeastern Grocers also owns Bi-Lo, Fresco y Mas and Harveys Supermarkets, and will continue to operate nearly 600 stores. The company declined interview requests Thursday.

Southeastern Grocers says it has a three-year plan that will "create stunning, remodeled stores in a significant portion of our footprint" and will provide "our customers with fresh, new concepts and products to cater to the local tastes and needs of the neighborhoods we serve".

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