Borders is preparing to close the book on its 40-year history without a happily ever after.
The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based chain is scheduled to ask a U.S. Bankruptcy court Thursday for permission to liquidate.
If the court agrees, Borders will sell itself to liquidators led by Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers Group. Liquidation sales in the Chicago area could start as early as Friday with the company possibly going out of business in September, the Sun-Times reports.
Borders filed for bankruptcy protection in February, but it could not secure a buyer to keep its doors open. Borders closed more than 30 stores in Chicago and the suburbs, trying to survive shoppers’ preference of buying books online.
Now, 399 stores will be closed, including 14 in the Chicago area, and about 11,000 employees will lose their jobs.
The future of gift cards remains murky. Borders will not elaborate on how the liquidation will impact the cards.
Shoppers seemed disappointed about the closings.
“It’s hard – where do I go for books? The library doesn’t have the novelty and the feeling of freshness and innovative ideas from the new books,” said Ramon Robinson, of Morgan Park, “I suppose I’ll buy a kindle.”
The 14 remaining stores in the Chicago area are: