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Central Grocers filing for chapter 11 reorganization

5/4/2017, 9:45 a.m.
In a statement released today, Joliet-based Central Grocers has announced that it will be filing for chapter 11 reorganization.

In a statement released today, Joliet-based Central Grocers has announced that it will be filing for chapter 11 reorganization.

The statement notes that the Strack & Van Til, Town & Country Market and Ultra Foods Stores will remain open while the company works out terms with its lenders.

“Central Grocers, Inc. today announced that the company and all of its subsidiaries have voluntarily elected to file for relief under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware,” the statement reads which also notes that the company still plans to move ahead with the sale of the Strack & Van Til chain of supermarkets.

The statement does indicate that its Joliet distribution warehouse will be sold as a result of the reorganization.

“Central Grocers is also seeking to sell its distribution center in Joliet as it winds down its wholesale distribution operations,” it reads, adding that the company had sufficient funds to continue store operations as it begins “winding down the distribution center.”

While the Strack & Van Til and Ultra Food stores remain open the company said that employees would continue to be paid and that vendors would receive payment.

“Strack & Van Til intends to pay vendors in full for goods and services provided on or after the filing date, May 4, 2017,” it reads.

In a statement, Jeff Strack, President and Chief Executive Officer of Strack & Van Til thanked customers and employees “for their hard work and dedication.”

Ken Nemeth, President and Chief Executive Officer of Central Grocers, said, that the move was necessary due to “increasingly difficult environment for independent supermarkets and retailers.”

He said that the Central Grocers would use the chapter 11 reorganization “to provide us the time and flexibility to conduct an orderly sale of the Strack & Van Til stores, while we work to sell the warehouse in Joliet and wind down our wholesale distribution operations.”

Court filings and other documents related to the court-supervised proceedings are available at a website administered by the Company’s claims agent, Prime Clerk, at https://cases.primeclerk.com/centralgrocers. Additional information is available by calling the Company’s Restructuring Hotline at (866) 727-8489 or by emailing CentralGrocersInfo@PrimeClerk.com.