Gander Mountain Company files for bankruptcy, blames direct-to-consumer sales

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Gander Mountain Company will close 32 stores.

Gander Mountain Company

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Big box retailer Gander Mountain Company is the latest retailer to succumb to market pressures.

The company and some of its subsidiaries filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Friday, and partially blamed direct-to-consumer sales for its predicament. Selling the company is the best path forward for Gander Mountain, according to a press release published Friday.

Gander said in the news release that its decision to file for bankruptcy was “the result of an in-depth review of the company’s strategic options undertaken in recent months to preserve the value of the company and position it for long-term success.”

Gander said it has faced challenges with traffic patterns and shifts in customer demand “resulting from increased direct-to-consumer sales by key vendors and accelerated growth of e-commerce." Aggressive efforts to improve retail efficiency were not enough to combat the financial burden of excess inventory and stores that haven’t performed well.

It expects to close a sale of the company by May 15. Thirty-two stores will be closed, and will start that process within the next few weeks. In the meantime, employee benefits, including retirement accounts, will remain unaffected.

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