Modell's Sporting Goods Files for Bankruptcy, Will Close All Stores

Modell's was founded 131 years ago, in New York City

Modell’s Sporting Goods
Photo: Getty

Modell’s Sporting Goods is closing its doors for good.

The retailer announced on Wednesday that it had filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in a New Jersey court and would close its remaining 115 stores, after being in business for more than 130 years.

In a press release, Modell’s CEO Mitchell Modell said that while they “evaluated several options to restructure our business to allow us to maintain our current operations” over the last year and “achieved some success,” the efforts were “not enough to avoid a bankruptcy filing amid an extremely challenging environment for retailers.”

“We are extremely appreciative of the support that our lenders (JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo), vendors and landlords provided during this difficult period, engaging in extensive renegotiation efforts and allowing us to pursue every possible avenue to preserve the jobs of our loyal associates,” Modell continued.

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Modell’s Sporting Goods
Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty

Founded in 1889 by Morris A. Modell, the company opened its first store on Cortland Street in New York City’s Lower Manhattan district.

Modell’s has remained in business over the years despite mounting competition from Dick’s Sporting Goods, Sports Authority (which was purchased by Dick’s in 2016) and similar establishments, selling everything from everyday activewear to team jerseys and sports equipment like baseball bats, hockey sticks and golfing gear.

But unfortunately for the company, “Modell’s didn’t stand out,” said GlobalData Retail Managing Director Neil Saunders, according to the Associated Press. “There’s a lot more competition.”

A spokeswoman for Modell said on Wednesday that the brand has more than 3,500 employees, the AP reported.

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“I want to thank each and every one of our associates for their support over the years and our customers for their historic support of Modell’s,” Modell continued in his press release statement. “This is certainly not the outcome I wanted, and it is one of the most difficult days of my life.”

“I believe liquidation provides the greatest recovery for our creditors,” he added. “We have partnered with Tiger Capital Group to liquidate the remaining stores beginning Friday morning, March 13.”

“The return from the liquidation of the first 19 stores managed by Tiger has been beyond spectacular, and we are confident this performance will continue across the remaining stores, maximizing return for our creditors,” Modell concluded.

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