Dawahare's Files for Reorganizational Protection

Fri May 30, 2008 4:30pm EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

LEXINGTON, Ky., May 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Citing the inability to
successfully operate a total of 31 stores profitably in a down-turned economy,
the century-old Dawahare's clothing chain has filed for a court-supervised
reorganization plan which will involve both the closing of 9 of its existing
retail units and the downsizing of its corporate support staff.
    Harding Dawahare, the Company's president, explained the necessary action:
"As a family-owned business with deep, deep roots within many communities, we
are all saddened by having to take this step. It's being done to try to
preserve as many jobs as possible, in conjunction with keeping a viable retail
presence in Kentucky.  Traditionally, our stores have offered exceptional,
stylish merchandise for every member of the family, at consistently
competitive prices -- carrying forward the business our Grandfather, Serur
Frank Dawahare, began with a peddler's cart full of goods a century ago.
However, times have changed, dramatically, over the past l00 years.  Today, we
find ourselves facing competition from outlets of numerous national chain
merchandisers -- these chains can often purchase goods for less than we can,
yet we both sell them for the same price.  As a result, in these economically
trying times, although we remain competitive, our market shares have
diminished, and many of our stores are no longer even marginally profitable".
    He continued:  "It is only after careful analysis of each and every one of
our stores and the corporate staff which supports them that we decided to seek
reorganization protection and to close 9 units -- with the plan that other
units remaining open will be profitable, and that we, as a company, will
survive."  Dawahare described the current retail market situation as having
delivered a "double blow" to the organization:  "We are experiencing
intensified national chain competition across the area, within an economy
where the price for a full tank of gasoline could have purchased a nice
article of clothing for each person in a family of four, at any Dawahare's
location," he explained.
    The family group of stores operates locations across the region under one
of 2 names:  Dawahare's, and "The Cat Bird Seat".  Beginning in early June
these units will begin store closing sales:  Owensboro, Bowling Green,
Paducah, Glasgow, Maysville, Mt. Sterling, Campbellsville and Newport Cat Bird
Seat, and Bluefield, West Virginia.
    Those 22 stores which will remain open are: Lexington (Gardenside,
Hamburg, Fayette Mall; Cat Bird Seat -- Fayette Mall), Corbin, Bardstown,
Elizabethtown, Morehead, Hazard, Pikeville, Paintsville, Whitesburg, Richmond,
South Williamson, Danville, Madisonville, Somerset, Middlesboro, Murray,
Louisville (Jefferson Mall, and Cat Bird Seats in St. Mathews and
    Dawahare noted that "We have survived for 100 years, while most of our
friends in similar businesses around the country had closed their doors years
ago. It is difficult for independent retailers to survive in any economy, much
less the current economy. While we were hopeful not to have to take these
steps, the economics of the situation have dictated this action."
    Dawahare's will continue to operate the 22 ongoing stores with the same
quality, fashion, prices, and service their customers expect and deserve.
SOURCE  Dawahare's

Harding Dawahare, +1-859-514-3269, or Mary Ellen Slone, +1-859-806-3596, both
for Dawahare's
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