Book World to close all locations
Liquidation sale to run from today until inventory runs out

By ALEX BELD - Daily News

Nov. 2, 2017

Kathy Schmelter of Plymouth, right, shops with her daughter-in-law, Nicole, on Wednesday morning at Book World in West Bend. The company announced it will be closing all 45 stores across seven states. The Book World in West Bend has been at its location on South Main Street for the past three years. “I’m going to miss this place,” Kathy said as she left.
John Ehlke/Daily News

Book World Inc. announced Wednesday that all 45 locations would be closing and a liquidation sale would begin today and continue until all inventory is sold. The company has more than 300 employees.

This includes the Book World located at 1602 S. Main St. in West Bend. The chain of stores started in Wisconsin in 1976 with their first opening in Rhinelander.

Book World Vice President Mark Dupont said a shift toward online shopping has “been enormous.” He explained brick-and-mortar stores have been closing at a high rate and that much needed anchor stores, which attract customers to shopping areas, have been disappearing.

During the past 12 months, the company has seen a reduction in sales of about 15 percent, which is unprecedented for the chain.

“We certainly have had other ups and downs,” Dupont said. “This year sales are, quite frankly, terrible.”

The loss of customers has led to what the news release calls a downward spiral in customer counts, a level that can’t sustain the fourth largest book store chain in the nation.

Owner Robert Burg checks out a customer Wednesday morning at Book World in West Bend. A liquidation sale on items will begin Thursday. Book World Inc. announced they will be closing all 45 stores across seven states.The Book World in West Bend has been at their location on South Main Street for the past three years.
John Ehlke/Daily News

Dupont said despite having gone through tough periods in the past, “we don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel.”

The liquidation sale is expected to continue through January, but items may run out prior to that and won’t be replaced.

“They’re going to start some discounting and see how it goes,” West Bend store manager Robert Burg said about the liquidation of store merchandise.

The news release from book world states there will be “deep” discounts on books, toys, games, puzzles, magazines, calendars, trading cards, gifts and other merchandise.

Customer Cindy Knoebel said she was sad to hear about the closing of the store and that she isn’t certain where she will go next to get her books.

The book store chain has hired Yellen Partners to assist them with the liquidation process. The familyowned company specializes in closing down businesses and liquidation.

Though Book World started in Wisconsin, it expanded into six other states: Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota and Missouri.


Book World closing Mequon store
Liquidation sale begins today

By Gary Achterberg - News Graphic Staff

MEQUON — After a four-year run as Mequon’s only book store, Book World announced Wednesday it is closing all 45 of its stores, which are scattered across the Midwest.

Book World opened a 3,400-square-foot store at 10920 N. Port Washington Road in the Mequon Pavilions in November 2013, filling a void created when Next Chapter Bookshop suddenly pulled up stakes the year before from a different location in the same shopping center.

A news release from Book World said that it will begin a liquidation sale today at all its locations that will run until all inventory is sold.

“The liquidation sale will offer customers deep discounts on books, toys, games, puzzles, magazines, calendars, trading cards, gifts and all other merchandise,” according to the news release. “Customers are encouraged to shop immediately to take advantage of the sale while inventory is still available.”

Book World has hired Yellen Partners, a family-run liquidation company, to assist in the closing and liquidation process.

“The national shift in the retail marketplace towards e-commerce has triggered the loss of vital mall anchor stores and a downward spiral in customer counts at Book World stores, reducing sales to a level that will no longer sustain business operations,” the news release added.

Book World opened its first store in Rhinelander in 1976. It has grown to 45 stores in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota and Missouri. It is the fourth-largest book store chain in the nation.

Prior to Book World, Next Chapter was open in the Mequon Pavilions for approximately three years. The store was owned by former employees of Harry W. Schwartz, which closed a book store in the same location in 2009.