Liquidation sales under way at C-U Payless stores

Liquidation sales under way at C-U Payless stores

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CHAMPAIGN — With Payless ShoeSource planning to close all 2,100 of its U.S. stores, liquidation sales are under way at the two Champaign locations.

Signs on the stores in the Market Place Shopping Center and at 2002 N. Prospect Ave. announced "GOING OUT OF BUSINESS" sales of 20 to 40 percent off, and "EVERYTHING MUST GO!"

Employees at the local stores said they didn't know how long they would remain open and directed questions from News-Gazette Media to Payless' corporate office.

Company spokeswoman Lauren Jeffords said she didn't know the local closing dates but shared a Payless statement: "We expect all stores to remain open until at least the end of March and the majority will remain open until May."

Liquidation sales can vary in length as the company moves around inventory to higher-performing stores. And as inventory decreases, the discounts generally increase.

The company, which was founded in 1956 in Kansas, had 4,400 stores when it last filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2017.

It immediately closed 400 stores, including the one in Danville, and emerged later that year from bankruptcy with 3,500 stores around the world.

Payless' franchise operations and stores outside the U.S. will remain open, the company said.

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