Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

By Jim Orr 

Shopko Keeps Making Moves


December 20, 2018

Shopko Stores Operating Co., which announced plans this month to close its Kimball department store, keeps making moves to right its financial ship.

The Wisconsin-headquartered retailer in recent days reported the sale of 64 of its pharmacy locations to supermarket chains – 42 to Kroger and 22 to Hy-Vee.

Those moves don’t affect the Kimball operation, but this development offers perhaps a glimmer of hope: The manager of the Shopko Hometown outlet in Stanley, N.D., told the media last weekend that plans to close that store were reversed.

Stanley and Kimball have something in common: Both communities have online petitions to keep open their stores. In Stanley, that petition reportedly gained 1,500 signatures.

Kimball’s petition on the Grow Kimball Facebook page urges folks to email Shopko at [email protected] with messages to save the local shopping destination.

Some have speculated locally about Shopko changing course to keep alive stores once designated for closure. A Kimball store employee referred The Observer to a corporate spokeswoman for comment, but she could not be reached Monday or Tuesday.

The chain announced intentions earlier this month to close 39 stores in 19 states, including some in Nebraska. The company’s website says it operates more than 363 stores in 24 states in the central U.S., West and Pacific Northwest.

The closures were based on profit outlook, sales trends and growth potential. Liquidation sales have begun in Kimball and at other Shopkos expected to close early in 2019.

Nebraska stores in Lincoln and Ord also are on the hit list.


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