The sporting goods retailer filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy back in March with plans to close 140 stores and two distribution centers. They would keep the rest of their stores open while working on restructuring and reorganizing the brand as a whole. Plans fell through, however, due to their creditors and lenders being overly concerned about the $1.1 billion debt Sports Authority has accrued.
Sports Authority is now liquidating their assets and looking at potential buyers for their stores. A spokesperson for the company said that they “have received initial expressions of interest from a number of potential buyers” and that they “are optimistic about the results of the process.”
However, there is a very good chance that, once sold, Sports Authority will be a thing of the past, mainly due to the stiff competition and lagging sales in the sporting goods industry, particularly for brick-and-mortar businesses. At the time of their bankruptcy filing, Sports Authority had more than 14,000 employees and 450 stores across America. Ten years ago, they were the world’s largest (and most well known) sporting goods retailer, boasting high sales and weak competition.
While Dick’s Sporting Goods has become a viable competitor over the years, Sports Authority is victim to the same beast so many other big names have fallen to: online shopping. While it’s become a trend for brick-and-mortar shops to close in this Internet age, most of the companies that fell did so because they came to the Internet way too late in the game. While Sports Authority does have a website, it is not enough to stay afloat.
It’s too soon to predict their exact fate, but customers should be expecting some pretty good sales this spring and summer.