Mattress Firm files bankruptcy, will close hundreds of US stores

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"The process we have initiated today will allow us to strengthen our balance sheet and accelerate the optimization of our store portfolio", Mattress Firm CEO Steve Stagner said Friday.

The company has more than 3,200 stores and more than 9,800 employees in the US and in recent years had aggressively expanded its retail footprint. The company said it will quickly close 200 underperforming stores and make decisions about whether to close or maintain the other 500 stores in the coming weeks.

Weighed down by slowing sales and an overly aggressive expansion, Mattress Firm filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Friday.

Numerous stores that are slated to be shut down are located "in certain markets where we have too many locations in close proximity to each other", CEO Steve Stagner said in a statement.

ME locations of Mattress Firm stores were not among the 209 listed for immediate closure in documents sent to the BDN by Mattress Firm representative Erica Martinez of marketing firm Jackson Spaulding.

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That's why Mattress Firm, America's largest bed store, has filed for bankruptcy.

Instead, it will transfer mattresses to other stores, warehouses or distribution centers, or could "decide to abandon" showroom products, according to a court filing. It owes its largest creditor, mattress maker Simmons Manufacturing Co., almost $65 million.

The company has expanded aggressively in recent years, purchasing competitors. In a court filing, the company acknowledged "several well-intentioned, but ill-advised, marketing and sales promotions".

Photo of Mattress Firm in downtown Silver Spring by Mike Diegel.

Mattress Firm's parent company has been dealing with its own problems as its stock price has drastically tumbled after it reported accounting irregularities that are being investigated. Debt already on Mattress Firms books raised the deal's value to about $3.8 billion.

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