BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
ASHWAUBENON, Wis. – According to a list of stores released on the company’s website today, the Fort Madison Shopko will be closing its doors on April 15 as the company looks to restructure under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
The announcement came today and includes the closure of more than 100 stores, including the Burlington location on Roosevelt, and nine other Iowa stores.
Iowa is the third largest state hit with the news. The company is closing a dozen locations in Utah and 13 in its home state of Wisconsin.
Local management in Fort Madison declined to comment on the closure but referred all questions to the company’s corporate headquarters in Wisconsin.
It was rumored that the Fort Madison and Burlington locations weren’t included in the closure lists for the company, but spokesman Tucker Elcock, who’s with Teneo, Inc., a management consulting firm in New York City that’s assisting Shopko with the restructuring, said that was speculation.
“I had not heard that before,” he said this afternoon. “The full list is available on the company website.”
He said the company cannot comment on how many employees are on staff at the Fort Madison location.
“We’re not going to comment on employment or employees as we’re still moving through that process and we’re not sure how that will shake out in the end,” he said.
The company also issued a statement regarding the optical center that indicated those centers will remain through the closure and will be reopened later at a new location.
Michelle Hanson, the company’s media spokesperson referred all requests for information to the company’s statement.
“This decision is a difficult, but necessary one,” said Russ Steinhorst, Chief Executive Officer. “In a challenging retail environment, we have had to make some very tough choices, but we are confident that by operating a smaller and more focused store footprint, we will be able to build a stronger Shopko that will better serve our customers, vendors, employees, and other stakeholders through this process.”
The company also issued a letter to customers that can be accessed at the following link: https://www.pencitycurrent.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/customer-letter.pdf