Modell’s Sporting Goods Negotiates to Save Two New York Stores
(Bloomberg) -- Modell’s Sporting Goods Inc. saved an additional two stores originally scheduled to close in New York City in its Hail Mary attempt to keep the retailer afloat.
After negotiations with landlords at 19 stores that were slated to close, Modell’s will keep stores located at 150 and 280 Broadway, in New York, open for business, Chief Executive Officer Mitchell Modell told Bloomberg on Thursday. The remaining 17 are still scheduled to close in about 60 days, by the end of April, he said. The two are in addition to an earlier five locations that Modell’s planned to shutter, which are also staying open thanks to the negotiations, he said.
The landlords at the two stores in Manhattan agreed to rent concessions, reversing the original decision to shut the doors. “We are thrilled to work with our landlord partners who were kind enough to understand the situation and preserve the 49 union jobs in both stores,” Modell said.
Modell ramped up his public cry for help in preserving his family legacy. He released a video detailing his appeal to vendors, landlords and factory communities outlining the company’s 130-history, its current struggles and asking for their continued support.
“Now the question is how do we make sure, Gotta Go to Mo’s,” the retailer’s signature tag line, is “alive and well,” Modell said.
For the first time, Modell is offering up some of his equity in the business. The executive said he’s willing to sell a minority stake in Modell’s to outside investors who can support the business through its turnaround.
“I always said we would be a privately held company, we would never be public, we would never sell out, but I’ve got no choice,” he said in the video. “I’m putting every option on the table.”
The sporting-goods empire planned to close more than 15% of its stores, according to a statement last week. The retailer operates more than 140 stores in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C.
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