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Borders to close Waikele, Kahului stores

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The Borders books, music and video stores and cafes at Waikele Center in Wai­pahu and Maui Marketplace in Kahu­lui will close by the end of May, the company said yesterday.

There was no information on the number of employees affected as the Michigan-based parent company had not yet notified the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations’ Workforce Development Division of the impending closures.

Borders filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization in February and announced the closure of some 200 of its 642 stores, including two Hawaii locations — at Crossroads Center in Kailua-Kona and the Kmart Kukui Center in Lihue. Those stores are to close by the end of next month.

In its bankruptcy filing, Borders cited $1.28 billion in assets and $1.29 billion in debts as of Dec. 25, according to the Associated Press.

Meanwhile, the Seattle’s Best Coffee unit of Starbucks Corp. is protesting the store-closure plan, according to a Wall Street Journal report earlier this month.

Seattle’s Best Coffee submitted an objection to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court citing concerns that Borders Group’s plan to reject store leases and abandon property could damage SBC’s brand image and lead to exposure of proprietary trade secrets.

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