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Are the bells finally tolling for Fairway?


Fairway, the New York City grocer whose single store on the Upper West Side of Manhattan became a supermarket legend, may finally be being weighed down by its ambitious expansion program.

The New York Post reported that Fairway — known for its high-quality meat, cheese, and coffee departments — was on the verge to filing for bankruptcy after failing to find a buyer for its 14 stores. The Post article also stated that competing supermarkets, including Shop-Rite, appear interested in taking over the space at Fairway’s original location on 74th Street and Broadway.

In 2007 Fairway’s founders, the Glickberg Family, sold an 80% stake in the company to Sterling Investment for $140 million. Sterling put the suburban expansion plan into motion, assuming $300 million in debt. Failing to post a profitable quarter, Fairway filed for Chapter 11 protection and was bought out of bankruptcy by GSO Capital, which later sold its stake to Brigade Capital Management and Goldman Sachs.

Fairway recently closed its store in Nanuet, N.Y., and sources told the Post that two other stores in New Jersey are likely to follow.

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