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Shopko -- Outside (copy)

Shopko Hometown's Beatrice store will close later this year. The store is the latest in Nebraska to close as the company works through bankruptcy.

Shopko Hometown in Beatrice is one of the latest in Nebraska to announce the store will be closing later this year.

The store is expected to close in May after around seven years in business.

Store manager Colton Hill said the store currently has 15 employees, and that he was unsure what would happen with the building.

“During the time we spent here, it was great to have the customers we did have and will miss them just as much as they miss us,” he said.

According to Shopko’s website, the store is expected to close May 12. Hill expects there will be liquidation sales leading up to the closure date, though didn’t have specifics Thursday morning.

Shopko Hometown, at 123 N. 24th St., opened in Beatrice in August 2012 following a merger with Pamida.

As part of the merger, Shopko invested approximately $80 million into more than 170 Pamida store conversions in phases.

In January, the Wisconsin-based retailer filed for bankruptcy and announced that more than 100 of its 367 stores in 25 states would be closing, including four locations in Lincoln. Shopko stores in several other Nebraska towns are also closing.

The company’s first store opened in 1962.

Shopko is reported to have less than $1 billion in assets and cumulative debt that is somewhere in the $1 billion to $10 billion range. By closing stores and auctioning off its pharmacy assets, the company hopes to reorganize its debt by the March 14 deadline set by the bankruptcy court.

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