Book World announced Tuesday it is closing all 45 of its bookstores across seven states.
The company has 320 employees across all stores and its corporate headquarters in Appleton, according to Mark Dupont, senior vice president.
Beginning Thursday, a liquidation sale will begin at each Book World store location until all inventory is sold. The sales are expected to last into January, Dupont said.
Book World has hired Yellen Partners to assist with the liquidation process. The liquidation sale will offer discounts on books, toys, games, puzzles, magazines, calendars, trading cards, gifts and all other merchandise.
The national shift towards e-commerce has triggered the loss of mall anchor stores and a downward spiral in customer counts at Book World stores, reducing sales to a level that will no longer sustain business operations. Book World has stores in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota and Missouri.
Wisconsin locations include Fond du Lac, Manitowoc, Mequon, Oshkosh, Sheboygan, Sturgeon Bay and West Bend, among others. See a list of all Book World locations here.
Book World opened its first store in 1976 in Rhinelander and is currently the fourth largest bookstore chain in the United States.