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Borders seeks to liquidate, close all 399 stores


Ann Arbor, Mich. -- Borders Group, which had been holding out hope that a buyer would come forward to save the company, said late Monday it will seek court approval Thursday for a liquidation led by Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers Group.

The bookseller said that, with approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Southern District of New York, it could begin shuttering its 399 remaining stores as early as Friday, and it is expected to go out of business for good by the end of September.

"Following the best efforts of all parties, we are saddened by this development," said Borders president Mike Edwards in a statement. "We were all working hard toward a different outcome, but the head winds we have been facing for quite some time, including the rapidly changing book industry, e-reader revolution and turbulent economy, have brought us to where we are now."

Borders's best chance to stay in business fell apart last week when the $215 million bid by private-equity investor Jahm Najafi dissolved and the chain was unable to find other potential buyers to keep it alive.

It now faces 399 store closings and putting nearly 11,000 people out of work. Borders said it does expect to be able to pay vendors for all expenses incurred during the bankruptcy cases.

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