By DIVYA KUMAR
Times Times Writer
The parent company of Winn-Dixie announced on Thursday that it plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization and close 94 "underperforming" stores in an attempt to save itself .
the Tampa Bay area, that means that five local grocery stores in Winn-Dixie and Harvey & # 39; s will be closed, according to parent company Southeastern Grocers.
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In Hillsborough County, four stores will be closed: Winn-Dixie at 2525 N Dale Mabry Highway and at 4317 Gandy Blvd. in Tampa will be closed, as will Harvey's at 2525 E Hillsborough Ave. At Apollo Beach, the Winn-Dixie at 6180 US 41 will also close.
At St. Pete Beach, the Winn Dixie store at 7625 Blind Pbad Road will be the only store in Pinellas County closed.
The Winn-Dixie at 2126 Collier Parkway in Land O & # 39; Lakes will be the only store in Pasco County that will close.
The company did not give a timetable for when the closures will be made. The company's statement says it expects to "work on this process as quickly and efficiently as possible" within the next 90 days.
"The agreement we announced today is an important step in transforming Southeastern Grocers to put our company in the best position to succeed in the extremely competitive retail market in which we do business," the manager said in a statement. general of Southeastern Grocers, Anthony Hucker.
This will be the latest in a series of bankruptcies, closures and layoffs for the supermarket chain. since 2005. But the measure is expected to reduce the company's $ 1 billion debt by half, the company said. Southeastern Grocers, which also owns Fresco y Más and Bio-Lo, will continue to operate 582 stores.
"We conducted a comprehensive review of our strategic options and determined that this financial restructuring benefits our badociates, customers, supplier partners and the communities in which we serve," Hucker said in the statement.