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Borders throws in the towel
Book store liquidation could begin Friday
borders pic
Borders in Turlock could close its doors by September if the Border Groups plan to liquidate all company assets is approved in court on Thursday. - photo by ANDREA GOODWIN/ The Journal

The closing of a national chain of book stores could have an immediate impact on Turlock residents. Borders book stores announced Monday that they will submit a plan to liquidate all store assets at a court hearing on Thursday. If the plan is approved, Borders could start the liquidation process as soon as Friday.

Borders filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in February. They were unable to find a buyer for the national chain. They announced Monday that they plan, with the court’s approval, to sell all store assets to Hilco and Gordon Brothers, who will liquidate all assets. This would include selling all store property, closing all 399 stores, and laying off Borders’ 10,700 employees.

“We found out about this yesterday, like the rest of the world,” said Bobbiejo Chavez, inventory supervisor of the Turlock Borders.

Chavez said that Borders in Turlock, located in Monte Vista Crossing, currently employs 21 people.

“We don’t know exactly when it will be closing, everything is still up in the air,” Chavez said.

Mike Edwards, president of Borders Group, credited the changing book industry, eReaders and the economy for Border Group’s financial problems. He said that Borders was previously working towards a different outcome.

“Following the best efforts of all parties, we are saddened by this development,” Edwards said.

Shoppers at the Turlock Borders were surprised by the news that it was closing, but said it wouldn’t impact their ability to purchase new books. Several shoppers said that they browsed books in Borders but made most of their purchases on Amazon. Others said that they would look to other local stores for their book purchases.

“I’ve only been here a few times, actually,” said Cindy Browning. “If I buy books, it’s usually from Walmart or Target.”

The closure of Borders will leave Turlock with only one book store, Lightly Used Books on Center Street. Valorie Brown, who opened the store with her husband Tim, said that the closing of Borders could possibly have an impact on Lightly Used Books. She said that Borders sells a lot of new non-fiction and history books that buyers later re-sell to Lightly Used Books.

“I’m sorry to see it go. After readers finish those good books they bring them here,” Brown said. 

Borders will be the second anchor retailer to leave Monte Vista Crossings because of company-wide liquidation. Circuit City went out of business in March 2009, leaving vacant a space that was later occupied by InShape. Hall Equities, owner of Monte Vista Crossing, could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.

The court hearing to decide the fate of Borders Group will be held on Thursday. Under the liquidation plan all Borders stores will be closed by the end of September.  

To contact Andrea Goodwin, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2003.