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EMS, Bob’s Stores Transition To Eastern Outfitters

Eastern Mountain Sports (EMS) and Bob’s Stores are making a big business move.

Versa Capital Management, LLC on Tuesday announced the establishment of Eastern Outfitters, LLC, a new holding company with more than $400 million in annual multi-channel revenue. The news followed Vestis Retail Group’s Chapter 11 filing in April, when the Versa Capital affiliate said it would shutter all Sport Chalet locations and restructure EMS and Bob’s.

Eastern Outfitters will now take over the restructured and recapitalized operations of EMS and Bob’s Stores. Both retailers will operate as business units of Eastern Outfitters, which will be headquartered in Meriden, Connecticut, under the leadership of chief executive officer Mark Walsh.

“We are pleased that this transaction provides EMS and Bob’s, two strong and growing retailers, the opportunity to continue providing exceptional service to their loyal customer bases,” Versa CEO Gregory Segall said. “We appreciate the significant support the companies received from their trade creditors. Their affirmation of the important positions EMS and Bob’s hold in their respective markets was a major catalyst for this successful and accelerated restructuring.”

EMS and Bob’s Stores will remain focused on their core demographic groups in the Eastern and Mid-Atlantic regions. As the second largest U.S. multi-channel retailer of outdoor sports apparel and equipment, EMS has numerous stores located in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic areas. Bob’s Stores is a 60-year-old Northeast retailer that sells value-oriented apparel, footwear and work wear.

“The management team and I would like to thank our trade and service partners for their unwavering support and for recognizing the value of our brands and their confidence in our strategic plan,” said Walsh. “We are excited to begin this new chapter and the growth trajectory we have outlined for our future.”