About 200 Walden Books Stores Closure -Including Some in Tampa Bay

Several Walden Books’ stores will be closing in 2010. In a effort to increase profits, Borders Group which includes Walden Books and Borders, is going to close about 200 Walden Books across the United States. The store closure includes the Walden Books in University Mall in Tampa, and the Walden Books in Lakeland Square Mall.

With the store closings in January, approximately 1,500 positions–the majority of which are part-time jobs–will be eliminated. Employees have been informed of the right-sizing plan and efforts will be made to place qualified individuals in other positions within Borders Group. Displaced employees will receive severance.

The mall-based right-sizing initiative has been ongoing at Borders Group for a number of years as the retailer has closed underperforming Waldenbooks Specialty Retail stores annually as part of its overall turnaround strategy. The company shuttered 112 stores in the segment in fiscal 2008 and from fiscal 2001 through 2007, closed an average of 66 stores per year within the Waldenbooks Specialty Retail segment.

According to the official press release the store closings are not set in stone and actual closures may vary from the list that was originally provided.

These stores are expected to close by the end of January 2010. The list is not final and does not create any obligation by Borders Group with respect to the closure of any specific store. This list is based on currently available operating, financial and competitive information. Actual store closures may differ depending on a variety of factors including, but not limited to, risks related to finalization of third-party agreements, expected cost savings, income tax and other benefits associated with the store closures in the anticipated time frame, if at all.

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