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Payless

Shoppers at Payless ShoeSource in Southern Hills Mall in Sioux City in 2014 file photo. The shoe retailer announced plans to close all its storefronts in March 2019.

SIOUX CITY -- Discount shoe retailer Payless ShoeSource plans to close all 2,300 of its U.S. stores, including three in Siouxland, as part of a bankruptcy filing later this month, according to a published report.

Liquidation sales could start as soon as next week, the Reuters news service said Thursday, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter

Payless has stores at Southern Hills Mall in Sioux City, in the Sunset Plaza Mall in Norfolk, Nebraska, and in Storm Lake, Iowa.

Through a deal with Shopko, Payless also has stores inside the Shopko in Sioux City and in several area Shopko Hometown stores in the tri-state area. 

The Reuters sources said there's still a small chance a buyer could emerge after Payless files for bankruptcy. In the meantime, the company is getting ready for going-out-of-business sales in the next week, according to one of the sources.

Payless filed bankruptcy previously in April 2017, and exited 18 months ago, with about $400 million in loans, after slashing its debt pile from over $800 million, according to the Reuters story. A group of creditors, including hedge fund Alden Global Capital LLC, took over ownership, according to court records.

The closing of the shoe store would be the latest blow for Southern Hills Mall. One of its anchors, Younkers, closed last year, and a second anchor, Sears, is set to close next month. 

Shopko would lose its Payless tie at a time when the Green Bay, Wisconsin-based retailer is closing more than 200 of its more than 360 stores, or roughly 56 percent of all its locations. In Siouxland, the soon-to-be shuttered stores include Shopko Hometown locations in Ida Grove, Cherokee and Onawa, Iowa, and Norfolk, Nebraska.

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