Modell's Sporting Goods CEO Mitchell Modell said he will do what it takes to keep his family's 130-year-old company alive starting with the closure of 19 stores.

No closing date or the start of closing sales were revealed.

Three of the stores closing will be in New Jersey:

  • Englishtown: Marlboro Plaza
  • West Berlin: Berlin Circle Plaza
  • Woodbridge: Woodbridge Crossing

The company on Monday released a video asking the company's vendors, landlords and customers for their help in ensuring that "people are still able to go to Mo's."

He is also making available a minority stake in the chain, which he called a form of crowdsourcing.

"We will do whatever it takes to save these stores and protect the communities that we have served and loved for generations," Modell said in a statement. "This is not a business, and these are more than associates. Much more. This is a real family, and with a little help, we hope to serve your children, just as we served you, for generations to come."

Model said he was able to negotiate a deal with one of his landlords that kept open four stores originally scheduled to close, including the store at Rockaway Town Square.

Modell told Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business Channel that telling workers about the closures was one of the most difficult days of his life.

He told Bartiromo the chain's sales were off by $50 million in 2019 which he blamed on a shorter holiday shopping season, bad local teams and a warm weather.

An investment banking company hired by Modell to look at the retailer's financial situation advised closing unprofitable stores to preserve the chain, Modell told Bartiromo.

Modell's opened its first store in 1889. At its peak, the store had 150 stores.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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