Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Mervyn's Goes Bankrupt

By Chris Thompson
Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 9:08 AM

Damn! Mervyn's, the Hayward-based middlebrow department store chain and mainstay of American Main Streets for almost sixty years, has filed for bankruptcy. According to the East Bay Business Times, Wal-Mart's been eating it up on the cheap side of the industry, and JC Penney has been going at it from the other end. (note to self: Eew.) Even after closing seventy stores in the last four years and consolidating its business, the chain just couldn't handle its massive debt load. All is not lost, however; a group of financiers led by Wachovia has just floated the company $465 million in credit. (Wait: Wachovia's got that kind of cash lying around? Didn't they just flirt with collapsing themselves?) Finally, here's a fun fact: One of the two companies that owns Mervyn's is New York's Cerberus Capital Management. You know who sits on the Cerberus board of directors? Dan Quayle. So if Hayward loses one of its most important economic players, we can always blame him.

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