Joe's Sports files for bankruptcy protection

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I'm kind of sorry to see this:

Joe's Sports files for bankruptcy protection

Joe's Sports & Outdoor — a Wilsonville, Ore.-based retailer that got its start more that 50 years ago selling sleeping bags out of a station wagon, and now includes a dozen stores in the Puget Sound region — filed for bankruptcy protection Wednesday.

By Amy Martinez
Seattle Times business reporter

Joe's Sports & Outdoor — a Wilsonville, Ore.-based retailer that got its start more that 50 years ago selling sleeping bags out of a station wagon, and now includes a dozen stores in the Puget Sound region — filed for bankruptcy protection Wednesday, saying it needs time to work out its financial problems.

Joe's said it plans to keep all 30 of its stores in the Northwest open and will continue to pay its employees wages and benefits. To fund its operations, it said it has obtained $50 million in new borrowing from Wells Fargo Retail Finance.

President and CEO Hal Smith said the restructuring will give Joe's time to face its "capital challenges so that we can emerge an even stronger company with a firm financial position."

Joe's, formerly called G.I. Joe's, listed both assets and debt of $100 million to $500 million in Chapter 11 documents filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. The 20 largest consolidated creditors without collateral backing their claims are owed a total $12.8 million, court papers show.

Portland-based outerwear brand Columbia Sportswear is listed as the second-largest unsecured creditor. It's owed about $888,300.

"They've always been one of the top accounts for us in the Northwest," said Ron Parham, Columbia's senior director of investor relations. "We're certainly hopeful they'll work through the Chapter 11 bankruptcy period and come out the other side."

Joe's began in 1952 when Edward Orkney, a World War II veteran, began selling Army surplus sleeping bags from the back of a station wagon in Portland.

Today, Joe's has two stores in Idaho, 13 in Oregon and 15 in Washington, 12 of which are in the Puget Sound region.

In 2006, the company took over two prominent Eastside locations previously occupied by Larry's Markets, giving it a strong foothold in Bellevue and Kirkland.

Two years ago, Gryphon Investors, a San Francisco private-equity firm, bought Joe's for an undisclosed amount.

The company employs about 1,600 people.

Jeff Green, a San Francisco Bay Area retail consultant, said he'd be surprised if Joe's does not ultimately use the bankruptcy proceedings to get out of some store leases and close lowest performers.

"I don't see how they could emerge from bankruptcy without becoming leaner and meaner," Green said.

"There are some chains that announce their store closings when they file for bankruptcy, but they're usually publicly traded, and that's done for the public markets," he said.

Green said sporting-goods retailers are struggling amid the global recession as many families pull back on discretionary purchases. "It's part of the household budget that's being cut," he said.
 
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I'm not, I'm glad. The corporate level was anti-gun and would ask you to leave their stores if they knew you were carrying. Since they also refused to guarantee your safety I thought they were hypocritical.

Any company or location that bans lawful firearms carry and has no way of ensuring a sterile environment is for all intents and purposes allowing illegal firearms carry. I will not support any company that encourages illegal firearms activity and believe such policies are detrimental to the safety of the people that visit their stores.

I'm going to sent them an email right now telling them so.
 

Morpheus

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Well, as soon as they changed their name from GI Joes to 'Joes' I knew it was going to fail.

Especially for the stupid reason they gave. Which as I recall, to make it so people didn't think they were related to the military.

They turned their back on their roots, and lost there customers. While it sucks for the employee's, it is what happens.

I wonder if they will have a fire sale now! hehe.

M
 

clearconscience

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Especially for the stupid reason they gave. Which as I recall, to make it so people didn't think they were related to the military.

They turned their back on their roots, and lost there customers.

M
+1
God forbid we do anything to support our troops.
What they should have done is added Thank You Troops to their Gi Joe's and maybe they would have done better. I would have continued to shop there.
 

Morpheus

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I failed to resist the urge to soap box. But why can't people understand, supporting the troops, the men and woman, is not the same as supporting the war.

People say they can die for a cause. Or even kill for a cause. People forget, Soldiers die and kill for other people's cause. They defend other people's rights at risk to their own.

But then again, a lot of people don't understand saluting the rank or position, not the person.

M
 
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Especially for the stupid reason they gave. Which as I recall, to make it so people didn't think they were related to the military.
I thought they got charged with copyright infringement by the GI Joes cartoon people :huh:


Either way, I agree. They used to be a great store but seem to have changed their philosophy.
 

Morpheus

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It could have been GI Joe Cartoon people, but considering GI Joes has been around for almost as long it seems odd they would try to sue now.

But as you said, either way they have seriously gone down hill.

M
 
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When I moved here 20 yrs ago, it was G.I. Joe's that I flocked to for my auto and outdoors needs. It felt like a hometown store that always had what I was looking for and helpful employees that had answers to my questions. Now it feels like some preppy-hipster-wannabe sports store. It is sad that they sold out to some California pencil pushers who really aren't in touch with what its heritage really is.
 
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Good Riddance to Joe's.
I bought a Brunton compass at Joe's which had a manufacturing defect. On returing it, per factory suggestion, I was required to give my drivers license number to get my money back! I insisted on talking to a manager but all that got me was the manager's insistance that there would be no refund unless I gave my license number.

Never went back and will be glad if they go out of business.
 
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Sorry, but I hope they survive. They have 30+ stores and have been in business for 50+ years. There are a lot of employees and vendors that are hurting because of this. I know vendors that are owed $100,000 and more. Rep groups that will owe commissions back to the factories because they have not paid their bills. Getting those stores back in business would be the best thing.
 
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Anyone else see the coincidence of the store tanking about the same time the new owners took over. They changed the name, filled the store full of Chinese made crap and got away from what used to be their bread and butter. If Joes goes away it will just make the remaining places like Bobs and Fishermans alot stronger. I couldnt care less if this San Francisco based company folds, it isnt the same place it used to be.
 
OP
Sun195
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Latest news...

Joe's Sports & Outdoor likely to learn its fate Thursday

By Amy Martinez
Seattle Times business reporter

Joe's Sports & Outdoor, the Northwest sporting-goods retailer that filed for bankruptcy protection last month, will go to court Thursday to reveal whether it has found buyers for any of its 31 stores and to seek approval for going-out-of-business sales if necessary.

Three creditors — two landlords and a clothing vendor — said Joe's hasn't attracted a buyer interested in keeping the stores open.

A hearing is scheduled for Thursday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware to review the monthlong bid process. Joe's spokesman John Mangan declined today to discuss any bids that Joe's might have received.

The Wilsonville, Ore.-based company has pursued a two-track bid process since seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection March 4. It said it hoped to find buyers for as many stores as possible, while also preparing for the possibility that none would emerge and it would need to close its stores after going-out-of-business sales.

"We heard that all of the bidders involved in the final process appear to be liquidators," said Ron Parham, senior director of investor relations at outerwear brand Columbia Sportswear, which is owed about $888,300 by Joe's. "It does appear to be moving toward liquidation."

The landlords for Joe's headquarters and four of its stores said in a filing today that the company was "unable to obtain a going concern bid" for its assets.

Joe's has 15 stores in Washington, 12 of them in the Puget Sound region, as well as 14 in Oregon and two in Idaho. It employs about 1,600 people.

Joe's stores typically are between 36,000 and 50,000 square feet, so the closure of all 12 stores in the Puget Sound region would leave a big hole in a local real-estate market already struggling with the demise of Linens 'n Things, Circuit City, Shoe Pavilion, Steve & Barry's and Gottschalks.

One of Joe's newest stores is at The Landing in Renton, a project by Dallas-based Harvest Partners. Harvest's Bob Baker declined to speculate about Joe's fate, saying only that "like many in the real estate and retail community, we continue to monitor the situation surrounding Joe's and hope they are able to prevail in this unprecedented economic environment."

Joe's began in 1952 when World War II veteran Edward Orkney started selling Army surplus sleeping bags from the back of a station wagon in Portland. Two years ago, Gryphon Investors, a San Francisco private-equity firm, bought Joe's for an undisclosed amount.
 

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