Family Christian Stores to Liquidate and Close

The largest chain of Christian book and merchandise stores Family Christian announced that it will liquidate its assets and close all of their outlets, comprising over 240 stores in 36 states. The statement did not provide a timetable for the liquidation.

President Chuck Bengochea says in the press release, “We had two very difficult years post-bankruptcy. Despite improvements in product assortment and the store experience, sales continued to decline. In addition, we were not able to get the pricing and terms we needed from our vendors to successfully compete in the market.”

The chain was bought in bankruptcy reorganization in August 2015, when vendors only received about 15 percent of what they were owed. The chain was started 85 years ago by the Zondervan brothers, and was separated from their publishing company in 1993 and spun off as independent company the following year.