RadioShack about to close its only remaining store in Berks

Exeter location in final days of closeout sale

EXETER TWP., Pa. - RadioShack is a business that's about to go belly up in Berks County.

The company's last remaining store in the Reading area -- 3923 Perkiomen Avenue in Exeter Township -- is now in the final days of a closeout sale, offering up to 90 percent off the merchandise it has left.

The store is one of approximately 200 set to close as a result of RadioShack's parent company, General Wireless Operations Inc., filing for bankruptcy in March.

That move came two years after RadioShack filed for its first bankruptcy in March 2015 and closed about half the stores it had then.

"Since emerging from bankruptcy two years ago as a privately owned company, our team has made progress in stabilizing operations and achieving profitability in the retail business, while our partner Sprint managed the mobility business," said Dene Rogers, RadioShack's president and chief executive officer. In 2016, we reduced operating expenses by 23 percent, while at the same time saw gross profit dollars increase eight percent."

At one time, RadioShack had more than 5,000 stores in the United States. Among them were several in Berks County, including one at the Berkshire Mall in Wyomissing and another at the Fairgrounds Square Mall in Muhlenberg Township. Those stores were shuttered long before the most recent bankruptcy filing.

RadioShack, founded in 1921, said it continues to operate its retail website and approximately 1,300 stores across the country, including a handful in Berks' neighboring counties of Chester, Lancaster and Lehigh. The company said it will evaluate its options for those stores.

Sprint said that it has reached an agreement with RadioShack to convert several hundred stores into Sprint-owned stores.

The electronics field has been hit particularly hard by the recent closings of brick-and-mortar stores, in part because of growing competition from online retailers like Amazon.

Appliance retailer hhgregg is among the companies that can no longer compete. It's closing all 220 of its locations by the end of May. The chain's sole Berks store in Wyomissing was shuttered earlier this year. The retailer had operated in space formerly occupied by electronics retailer Circuit City, which went out of business in 2009.

CNN cited federal statistics that show nearly 6,000 electronics and appliance stores, or more than one in 10, have closed in the United States over the past decade.

The slideshow below highlights other national retailers that have gone out of business or announced store closings in 2017. Several of the announcements have impacted Berks County, including rue21 and Wet Seal, both of which had stores at the Berkshire Mall.

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