Employees at Ashland’s Movie Gallery learned Friday the store is closing, with an official date still to be determined.
Shift manager Marla Thompson said she and her coworkers knew closing was a possibility in light of the company’s February bankruptcy filing, but until now were unsure.
Movie Gallery Inc. officials were unavailable for comment Sunday.
The company, which runs Movie Gallery, Game Crazy and Hollywood Video Stores, on Feb. 2 filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for Virginia’s Eastern District. The next day it announced plans to close 760 stores and Ashland’s operation was not on the list.
At the time, management of the Ashland location said it considered closure of the store unlikely.
Movie Gallery, owned by a consortium of holding companies, is indebted to between 5,000 and 10,000 creditors. The company’s bankruptcy filing estimates its liabilities at between $500 million and $1 billion and its assets between $1 million and $500 million. Its largest debts are to Warner Home Video, $9.5 million; Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, $8.2 million; and Universal Studios Home Entertainment, $7.7 million.
Movie Gallery was Ashland’s last remaining traditional video rental store. There are three Red Box video vending machines in town — located at Wal-Mart, Buehler’s and the Hawkins plaza — and rentals also are available at Discount Drug Mart and Ashland Public Library.
The store currently is having a closing sale, with DVDs and VHS tapes available at a discounted price