Borders Bankruptcy Won't Affect Maui Stores

Borders bankruptcy won’t affect Maui stores
Two branches on Big Island, Kauai will be shut down

By MELISSA TANJI, Staff Writer
Article from: The Maui News

KAHULUI – Maui shoppers are pleased that the two Borders bookstores on the island would not be closing despite Borders’ parent company filing for bankruptcy protection Wednesday.

The Borders Books Music Movies & Cafe at Maui Marketplace and the Borders Express store at the Queen Ka’ahumanu Center will remain open and are not affected by the bankruptcy, store officials said Wednesday morning.

Kevin Tanaka, the service manager at the Maui Marketplace store, said it was “business as usual,” and customers were waiting outside the store’s door before it opened, which is a common occurrence.

Only two stores in Hawaii will be closed, one in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island and the other in Lihue on Kauai, according to a bankruptcy filing.

The company said it will close about 200 of its 642 stores in the next few weeks. It cited cautious consumer spending, negotiations with vendors and a lack of liquidity as reasons for its troubles.

Kihei resident Stella Saadnia, who visits the Maui Marketplace Borders about once a week, said she likes the store’s variety of CDs, books and magazines and enjoys its cafe, where she can meet people and hang out.

“I like that it has a lot of different things,” she said outside the store Wednesday morning.

She also said it would be sad if the store were on the chopping block, noting that she still likes to read books despite the trend of people turning to electronics to read stories.

“I like the old-fashioned way,” she said.

Pukalani resident Robert Tomlinson said he feels the same way.

“I have a library at home,” he said outside the Maui Marketplace store. He added that he reads five books at a time and loves to give books away as gifts. Tomlinson said Borders has a good selection of Buddhist books as well as other religious books.

The Borders stores in Kahului and the Barnes & Nobles bookstore in Lahaina are the only two large major bookstore chains on the island.

Borders store officials said the Borders Express store at Piilani Village in Kihei closed about a month ago. Borders Express stores at the Whalers Village in Kaanapali and Lahaina Cannery Mall closed in January 2009.