BANGOR, Maine — Books-A-Million has reportedly reached an agreement with the failed Borders bookstore chain to buy the leases of 14 Borders stores — including those in Bangor and South Portland, according to a filing this week in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.
According to the agreement, which must be approved by the court by Aug. 29, Books-A-Million will buy the leases of the 14 stores for about $934,000.
Other stores listed in the court filings include those in Concord and West Lebanon, N.H., as well as stores in Connecticut, Maryland, Ohio and New Jersey.
Borders spokeswoman Mary Davis said Thursday the company was optimistic the deal be approved by the court.
“Any time a bookstore can remain in a community, it’s great for that community because it provides them with books and other materials … as well as the preservation of jobs,” Davis said. “We’re hopeful that it happens for those two reasons.”
In July, the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based Borders Group announced it was liquidating, and would be out of business for good this fall. At its peak in 2003, Borders operated 1,249 Borders and Waldenbooks stores. By the time it filed for bankruptcy protection in February, it had 642 stores and 19,500 employees. Since then, the number of Borders stores has fallen to fewer than 400 as the company laid off thousands of workers.
The Bangor and South Portland stores are still open.
In July, a deal fell through between Books-A-Million and Borders to buy 30 Borders locations after the parties could not agree on terms.
Books-A-Million is based in Birmingham, Ala. It operates 231 stores in 23 states and the District of Columbia.