Gander Mountain filed for bankruptcy Friday, and said it expects to attract a buyer as the company lowers its operating costs as part of its restructuring. The St. Paul, Minn.-based outdoor goods retailer also said it's closing 32 of its 162 stores in 26 states over the next several weeks. The company said it's in active discussions with several parties interested in a sale, and expects to solicit bids prior to an auction to be held in late April. Gander Mountain expects to submit the winning bid to the bankruptcy court in Minnesota for approval in early May, with the sale expected to be completed by May 15.
Total Retail’s Take: In a statement, Gander Mountain attributed its bankruptcy to "challenging traffic patterns and shifts in consumer demand resulting from increased direct-to-customer sales by key vendors and accelerated growth of e-commerce.” It sounds like Gander Mountain — along with many traditional retailers — is having a hard time competing with Amazon.com as well as product manufacturers that have begun selling directly to consumers rather than going through retail partners like Gander Mountain. The fact that Gander Mountain appears to already be in serious talks with potential buyers is a positive sign, however.