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Regional clothing retailer shutters stores

Oct '06
American Outfitters, founded in 1957, expanded over the past decade and operated 35 stores in late 1990s. It is now forced to scale back operations because it was unable to secure enough cash to continue operating.

The regional clothing retailer began closing its stores in Pennsylvania and Maryland recently asking a court to dismiss its request for bankruptcy protection.

The Bedford-based firm had sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in Pittsburgh. It had six stores in Pennsylvania and one in Maryland and it employed 52 people.

It owed about 100 to 199 creditors between US$1 million and $10 million and had estimated assets of up to $50,000.

Company had been negotiating for cash infusion with a lender, Clearfield Bank and Trust, which has a lien on company's assets, including its cash.

According to court documents, company had been seeking about $500,000 to replenish its inventory before it asked US Bankruptcy Court to dismiss its request for protection under federal bankruptcy regulations.

According to American Outfitters, there are no assets available for distribution to creditors, and company believes dismissal of its case is in the best interest of all parties involved to prevent further claims from accruing.

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