Business

Cedar Rapids, Coralville Younkers stores at risk of closure

Younkers could close seven additional stores across Iowa this year

Younkers at Westdale is one of two Iowa locations that will close this year. Photographed on Thursday, March 29, 2018. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Younkers at Westdale is one of two Iowa locations that will close this year. Photographed on Thursday, March 29, 2018. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Younkers stores in Cedar Rapids and Coralville are at risk of closing if Younkers’ parent company does not find a buyer to pull it out of bankruptcy.

Bon-Ton Stores Inc., the parent company of Younkers, has notified the state of Iowa that at least seven stores could close later this year. The listed stores include the Younkers at Lindale Mall in Cedar Rapids, 4444 First Ave. NE., and the Younkers at Coral Ridge Mall in Coralville, 1421 Coral Ridge Ave.

Bon-Ton spokeswoman Christine Hojnacki said the notices are just of potential closures and a closure date has not been set if they are shuttered.

York, Pa.-based Bon-Ton is in negotiations with a group of buyers for the company.

“We are required to provide notification under certain state and federal laws of potential job losses even as we work diligently to complete a sale of the company as a going concern. Bon-Ton is in active discussions with an investor group to acquire the company in a court-supervised sale process,” she said in an emailed statement.

Should the stores close, 95 people at Lindale and 110 at Coral Ridge would lose their jobs. Younkers announced in January that it would close its store at Westdale Mall in Cedar Rapids.

The other potential closures include stores in Dubuque, Mason City, Des Moines, West Des Moines and Sioux City.

A group that includes DW Partners, Namdar Realty Group and Washington Prime Group has told Bon-Ton that it is interested in buying the company. An auction for Bon-Ton was scheduled for Monday.

Bon-Ton had filed for bankruptcy in February.

l Comments: (319) 398-8366; matthew.patane@thegazette.com

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