That was quick. Barely two years after filing for its previous bankruptcy, RadioShack has again run out of money and options, resulting in the retail chain’s second Chapter 11 filing since Feb. 2015.
The company that filed for bankruptcy protection today isn’t technically the same business that went under back in 2015. Instead, today’s filing came from General Wireless Operations — a partnership between Standard General and Sprint.
That arrangement allowed around 1,700 corporate-owned Shacks to remain open, including a few hundred locations owned by franchisees. Since then, the Texas-based chain has closed stores here and there, but bankruptcy rumors began heating up in the last week amid reports that 200 locations were being shuttered around the nation.
In a statement released Wednesday evening, Sprint said it would be converting “several hundred” RadioShack locations into corporate-owned Sprint stores.
“Recognizing the risk in this business model, we entered into an agreement that would protect Sprint’s interests even in the event of another bankruptcy,” explains the company, which contends that the Shack bankruptcy and related store closings “are not material to Sprint’s overall sales results.”
The company has not identified which locations these will be, or what will come of the remaining RadioShack stores, though Sprint claims it will provide job opportunities elsewhere for those Sprint employees currently working at the stores-within-stores at RadioShacks.
While the official General Wireless line is that it is reviewing options for the remaining stores, Bloomberg is reporting that sources say these RadioShack locations will likely be liquidated.
We’ve already heard from a number of employees at these stores, but anyone still working at a RadioShack can still write us (firstname.lastname@example.org; use the subject line RADIOSHACK) if they want to share their feelings on what’s happening with their employer. We will not share your identity with the public or your employer.