Book World, a family-owned independent chain of bookstores located in Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota and Missouri, will be closing all 45 of its locations, WTMJ-TV reported. Book World opened its first store in 1976 in Rhinelander and is currently the fourth largest bookstore chain in the U.S.
Senior v-p Mark Dupont said the company has 320 employees in its stores and at its corporate headquarters in Appleton, Wis. A liquidation sale will begin Thursday at each Book World location, with sales expected to last into January. Book World has hired Yellen Partners to assist with the liquidation process.
"The national shift in the retail marketplace towards e-commerce has triggered the loss of vital mall anchor stores and a downward spiral in customer counts at Book World stores, reducing sales to a level that will no longer sustain business operations," Dupont said.