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Petsway’s 1517 W. Battlefield Road store is among five local locations that are not expected to be impacted by the bankruptcy filing.
SBJ photo by Geoff Pickle
Petsway’s 1517 W. Battlefield Road store is among five local locations that are not expected to be impacted by the bankruptcy filing.

Petsway files for bankruptcy

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Springfield-based Petsway Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, and a company official says it will result in the closure or sale of three stores outside the area.

Karl Keller II, vice president and co-owner of Petsway, said two of the impacted stores are in the St. Louis market and one is in Poplar Bluff. He said operations at the company’s five other stores — four in Springfield and one in Nixa — would not be affected by the bankruptcy proceedings.

“We’ve had one recent party look at the St. Louis stores,” he said, noting a buyer has not been secured.

The Dec. 30 bankruptcy filing lists estimated liabilities of over $1 million to $10 million and estimated assets of $50,001 to $100,000. The filing also lists up to 99 estimated credits, according to documents filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Western District of Missouri.

The creditor with the largest unsecured claim is OakStar Bank, which is owed $1.5 million, after collateral is accounted for, according to the filing. West Plains Veterinary Supply, which is owed $225,821, is among several vendors on the unsecured claim list.

Keller said the company’s St. Louis and Poplar Bluff stores have not been profitable.

“For St. Louis, this was due in large part to a new store project that experienced contractor issues, cost overruns and an extended delay in opening,” he said. “In Poplar Bluff, we had a new Petco and PetSmart open. That market cannot support three major pet stores.”

Moving forward, Keller said Petsway would focus on the Springfield-area market.

“Springfield has been good to us over the years, and we value that very much,” he said. “With our reorganization plan, we will be able to better serve our community.”

Petsway started under the Pet Warehouse name in 1989, after Keller’s father, Karl Keller Sr., formerly operated a venture called Karl’s Aquarium, according to Springfield Business Journal archives. The Petsway name came in 2007, when the Poplar Bluff store was added.

Former stores in Springfield and Joplin previously closed in recent years. The former location at 5009 S. Campbell Ave. is now Eventful Rental, according to SBJ reporting.

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