Southeastern Grocers, who owns BI-LO, released a statement on Thursday stating a number of their stores will close after the company conducted a thorough review of options for reducing their current debt.
Landlords at the closed stores will be stuck with large spaces to fill at a time when some retailers are cutting down on their brick-and-mortar stores, or going out of business.
Bankruptcy news was not unexpected for Jacksonville, Florida-based Southeastern Grocers.
The Winn-Dixie at 2126 Collier Parkway in Land OLakes will be the only Pasco County stores to shut down. "We are excited to emerge with the optimal store footprint and greater financial flexibility to invest in Southeastern Grocers' growth".
Southeastern Grocers has entered into a restructuring support agreement and will voluntarily file prepackaged Chapter 11 cases to efficiently execute its restructuring. It said it intends to file with the bankruptcy court by the end of March. In Apollo Beach, the Winn-Dixie at 6180 USA 41 will also close.
The company said it hopes to complete entire bankruptcy and closure process within 90 days. Southeastern executives say the planned restructuring should put it in better financial position, including a $500 million reduction in debt.
The store closures will take place in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and SC.
"The story for our company and for our iconic, heritage banners is still being written", the company said. That's why, he said, the food bank plans to step up its efforts in the area once the store closers in the hopes of filling that need.
Staff at each store closing will inform pharmacy customers where their accounts will be transferred to. Winn-Dixie has closed several under-performing stores in Central Florida.