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  • By Mar-Vic Cagurangan

Payless ShoeSource stores on Guam, Saipan shuttering doors soon

Payless ShoeSource GPO

Payless ShoeSource stores on Guam and Saipan will shutter their doors, following 2,300-plus outlets in the U.S. and Canada that have closed shop since March.

“Store closing sale” signs are posted at all outlets on Guam and Saipan, where stock are being liquidated at prices “30% off" on "everything.”

“It's with a heavy heart that I announce that the Guam and Saipan Payless Shoesource stores are officially starting the process to close our doors. To say it's been emotional since we found out would be an understatement,” Payless Guam general manager Taylor Kier Pier said in an announcement posted May 31 on her Facebook page.

“So come in and grab your favorite go-to styles or get a head start on your back to school shopping now. We are only selling through what we have in stock now. All sales final. Pls remember to be kind to our associates as we say goodbye to our second home,” Pier wrote.

The budget footwear retailer — which draws bargain hunters with its regularly offered “Buy One, Get One” and other discount promos — operates outlets at GPO in Tamuning and Micronesia Mall in Dededo.

It was not clear when the Guam outlets will officially shut down. A store clerk in GPO, who requested not to be named, said “I believe we are running until mid-July, but I am not too sure.” A phone call to the management was not returned at of this writing.

Saipan store general manager Flor Gose Deleon Guerrero posted a similar announcement on her Facebook page on May 31.

“I guess it has come to an end! We are mix emotions right now. Sadly, Payless ShoeSource Saipan and Guam are closing, too,” Delone Guerrero wrote. “Over the years, Payless Shoes is the only place I buy my kids and my family shoes. My 7 kids grow up with Payless shoes since they were born. (Wipe tears). .. To all my friends, relatives, and loyal customers, I would like to take this opportunity to thank each one of you guys for patronizing Payless ShoeSource since day one.”

Payless ShoeSource announced on Feb. 18 that the company and its North American subsidiaries have voluntarily filed for relief under Chapter 11 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. “Payless intends to use these proceedings to facilitate a wind-down of its approximately 2,500 store locations in North America and its e-commerce operations,” the Topeka, Kansas-based discount shoe retailer said in a press statement.

While most stores have ceased operations, the company said the remaining outlets will close on a rolling basis through June.

"We have worked diligently with our suppliers and other partners to best position Payless for the future amidst significant structural, operational, and market challenges. Despite these efforts, we now must wind down our North American retail operations under Chapter 11 and the CCAA,” said Stephen Marotta, appointed in January 2019 to serve as chief restructuring officer of Payless,

“The challenges facing retailers today are well documented, and unfortunately Payless emerged from its prior reorganization ill-equipped to survive in today’s retail environment. The prior proceedings left the Company with too much remaining debt, too large a store footprint and a yet-to-be realized systems and corporate overhead structure consolidation. As a consequence, despite our substantial efforts, we were ultimately unable to operate the North American retail and e-commerce operations on a sustainable basis.”


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