190208_SHOPKO02

The Shopko in Beloit is among those closing.

The Beloit and Delavan Shopko stores are among 139 more stores the company is closing this year, a Shopko spokeswoman announced Thursday.

The Beloit store at 2761 Prairie Ave. will close May 12. The Delavan store at 1450 E. Geneva St. will close May 5, according to a statement from spokeswoman Michelle Hansen.

A list of closures is available on the company’s website.

The Janesville store is not on the list.

About 50 optical centers in the closing stores will become freestanding locations, including the optical center at the Mineral Point Road location in Madison, according to a list on the website.

The company believes operating fewer stores will help Shopko “emerge as a stronger company,” attract potential buyers and overcome bankruptcy, according to the statement.

Beloit’s Shopko is the anchor store in a strip mall that includes Joann Fabrics and Crafts, Get It Now rent-to-own furniture and appliance store, Cricket Wireless and Johnny’s Cafe.

Shopko owns the facility and parking lot in Beloit. The rest of the strip mall is owned by Key Star Capital Fund, according to city land records.

The Greater Beloit Economic Development Corporation will make itself available to Shopko’s real estate division as a resource as it moves forward with liquidating the property, Andrew Janke, executive director for the economic development group, said in a statement.

Krista Sholes, manager at Joann Fabrics and Crafts, said she is only a little nervous about the Shopko closure.

Sholes learned of the closure Wednesday night and said she hopes it won’t affect business at Joann Fabrics. Many customers visit both stores when at the strip mall, she said.

In a statement, Beloit City Manager Lori Curtis Luther said Shopko’s closing follows a nationwide trend of brick-and-mortar businesses closing.

The city is “saddened” to see the business close and leave displaced workers, Curtis Luther said in the statement.

The city manager encourages those looking for jobs to visit jobsinrock county.com.

Shopko announced in January it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in Nebraska.

The Green Bay-based company announced 39 closures across 14 states in December. Nine more Wisconsin store closures were announced in January.

Shopko began closing in-store pharmacies at the beginning of the year, including the Janesville and Beloit Shopko pharmacies.

Local Shopko pharmacy customer files have been transferred to CVS pharmacy locations.

Reporter - Milton, Edgerton, Albany, Brodhead, Evansville, Footville, Orfordville, health

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