On Monday, San Francisco-based community market, Andronico's, announced that the company would be filing for bankruptcy after 82 years. The company will be sold to an investor as part of its Chapter 11 filing, according to Patch.
For generations, Andronico's has been loved for its family atmosphere, gourmet products and commitment to quality purveyors, but is now between $10-50 million in debt, which is equal to the company's assets, as reported by The Sacramento Bee.
"This is a bittersweet moment in our history," said Bill Andronico in a statement. " We have struggled mightily to keep going, but the combination of the economic downturn and a broken balance sheet was too heavy a burden."
According to the Oakland Tribune, Andronico's plans to keep all seven of its stores open and all 400 of its employees working while the company works through its financial problems. The company is currently in negotiations with Renovo Capital, an investment company.
The company was founded in 1929 by Greek immigrant, Frank Andronico, but an ambitious expansion in the '90s left the business floundering beneath crushing debt. Furthermore, with Bay Area expansions from companies like Whole Foods, Andronico's was faced with fierce competition. The company was unable to recover.
"It will be very difficult to revitalize Andronico's," said Helen Bulwik of New Market Solutions in an interview with SFGate. "That niche has become very competitive and very saturated, including stores such as Whole Foods. It's unfortunate. In their day, in the East Bay they were the neighborhood's only high-end store."
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