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The Younkers store at Oakwood Mall is among a dozen locations and a corporate office in Wisconsin that will close this year as company Bon-Ton Stores goes through bankruptcy.

"We are encouraged by the interest in Bon-Ton and we hope that jobs will be preserved through a sale process", the statement said. In late January, Bon-Ton announced the closure of 42 locations. However, firms specializing in liquidation also plan to submit an offer for the department store retailer.

These layoffs will only occur if the company fails to attract a buyer at a bankruptcy auction scheduled for Monday, April 9.

Bon-Ton is also closing Younkers stores in Eau Claire and Marshfield; and Boston Stores in Milwaukee, Janesville, Glendale, Racine, Greendale, Brookfield, Madison, and Wauwatosa.

According to bankruptcy filings in U.S. District Court in DE, an auction of Bon-Ton's assets is set for Monday. "We remain committed to pursuing the best path forward for the Company and its stakeholders, including Bon-Ton associates".

In either case - a liquidation or sale - it means a potential conclusion is nearing for a department store chain that employed 550 people within a 30-mile radius of the Lehigh Valley as recently as September 2016. It is legally required to provide employees with 60 days notice before they lose their jobs.

The spokeswoman said talks regarding the sale of the chain are ongoing.

The notice comes a week after Bon-Ton announced that it is in active discussion with parties to acquire the company in a Bankruptcy-Court supervised sale process, according to press release.

Bon-Ton filed for bankruptcy in early February. More than 2,200 employees state-wide will be affected.

No other stores were listed.


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