Gander Mountain files for bankruptcy, stores closing

Gander Mountain's Sheboygan store is located at County Road J and Gander Road.

Gander Mountain’s Sheboygan store is located at County Road J and Gander Road.

SHEBOYGAN — Gander Mountain filed for bankruptcy on Friday and will be closing 32 underperforming stores over the next few weeks.

The company told the decision to file comes after the company suffered financial losses from underperforming stores and losing customers to other online vendors. Gander Mountain has decided to sell the company while continuing operations. Bass Pro Shops could possibly bid to buy Gander Mountain in hopes of expanding. In October 2016, Bass Pro Shops acquired Cabela’s for $5.5 billion.

In Wisconsin, the Germantown and Eau Claire stores will be closed. At this time, the Sheboygan store, located at County Road J at Gander Road in the Town of Sheboygan, is unaffected by the bankruptcy filing. Stores in Appleton, Green Bay and Waukesha are also expected to remain open.

The filing wasn’t a surprise. Reuters reported nearly a month ago that Gander Mountain was close to filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company then issued a statement avoiding the question of bankruptcy. Gander Mountain plans to solicit bids prior to an auction planned for late April. The winning bid will then be submitted for court approval in early May, with a closing of the sale by May 15, according to the Milwaukee Business Journal.

The company plans to have normal business hours during the restructuring process.

Gander Mountain was founded in 1960 in Wilmot, an unincorporated community in Kenosha County, as a catalog retailer. The company is now headquartered in Saint Paul, Minnesota and once had 162 stores and over 5,600 employees.

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