Dozens of California Sports Authorities to Be Closed

Dozens of California Sports Authorities to Be Closed

Sports Authority, after being unable to find a buyer, will be closing all of its 450-plus stores across the country, including dozens of stores in California. As of last month, the retailer had 76 stores in the state.

The Colorado-based company, once the largest sporting goods chain the country with stores in 41 states, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March with the intent to restructure.

A part of that restructuring involved closing 140 stores, but when the retail giant was unable to reach an agreement with lenders, it was sold at auction.

A group of liquidation companies bought Sports Authority’s assets, with store leases to be sold off at a different time.

The stores will close, but it is not clear when exactly. In the March filings, it looked like store closures would take up to three months.

The chain’s stores began their “going out of business” sales this week. The store offers everything from soccer cleats to bicycles, for the 9 million bike trips that occur every day in the U.S.

Sports Authority started struggling in recent years with new competitors online. In the official announcement, CEO Michael Foss cited “the changing dynamics in the retail industry.”

Indeed, the sports equipment giant is not alone. Last month Vestis Retail Group — which is the parent of Eastern Mountain Sports, Bob’s Stores, and Sport Chalet — also filed for bankruptcy. It had $500 million in liabilities, and the company plans to close 56 stores, including all 47 Sport Chalet locations.

Sports Authority reported $3.5 billion in revenue last year, and employs 16,000 people. It also currently holds the corporate naming rights of Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium, where the Denver Broncos play.

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