Kauai RadioShack will become Sprint store

LIHUE — The RadioShack store at Kukui Grove Center will have a new look on March 31 — it will become a Sprint store.

“We survived the closings two years ago,” Ross Hiranaka, a RadioShack assistant manager, said Friday night. “But unless we get an extension, we’re already offering store-closing pricing. At the end of the month, this will become a Sprint store.”

According to a report in USA Today, the electronics retailer RadioShack has filed for its second bankruptcy in two years and will close 187 store, or about 9 percent of its 1,943 locations.

RadioShack, based in Forth Worth, Texas, filed its first bankruptcy in 2015 which resulted in approximately 2,400 of its stores closing. General Wireless, a joint venture of hedge fund Standard General and Sprint, acquired and has run 1,518 stores, according to the USA Today report.

In the reorganization petition filed Wednesday in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware, General Wireless said it plans to close 187 stores this month with the process already under way. General Wireless said it is closing the RadioShack portion of the 360 stores it shares with Sprint, and is evaluating whether to do the same in 971 other stores.

“I’ve already submitted an application with Sprint,” Hiranaka said. “I’m just waiting to hear if I’ll be hired.”

About 1,850 of RadioShack’s 5,900 employees are expected to be affected by the reorganization move. The number of employees working at the Kukui Grove RadioShack was not available.

“We started here more than 30 years ago,” Hiranaka said. “We’re also in the Top 20 of the stores in our region. Our customers, a lot of whom come in for parts and electronic components, won’t have this place anymore — unless we get an extension.”

Wade Lord, general manager of the Kukui Grove Center, said he is excited about the change.

“We are excited to announce that RadioShack will be transitioning to a Sprint Wireless store in the upcoming weeks,” Lord said. “Sprint’s national campaign of providing quality service at reasonable prices is a natural fit for Kukui Grove Center. They have had a wonderful response from the Kauai community to the initial rollout of the Sprint product line and services since their acquition of RadioShack in 2016. We are delighted to see them fully integrate their complete format of wireless offerings with out family of merchants.”

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