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Volume 24 No. 156
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          JumboSports Inc. announced that it will "continue to
     slim down, closing 18 of its 77 stores" and taking a $35-
     $45M "restructuring charge," according to Aissatou Sidime of
     the TAMPA TRIBUNE.  The moves, part of a '98 strategy to
     "run a leaner company, eliminate inventory problems and pay
     down debt," will result in 740 lost jobs.  In addition, the
     chain will "shrink" to 59 stores in 23 states by summer. 
     The latest round of closures follow the October closings of
     eight stores, and withdraws the company from 15 "large to
     mid-sized markets," mainly in the Midwest.  The "deciding
     factor" in the restructuring was the company's desire to
     reduce its debt, which totaled $360M on October 31.  With
     the closings, JumboSports "expects to recover" $70M and
     "apply those funds" to the debt (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 1/22).