The writing has been on the wall for RadioShack for quite some time.
The chain is getting ready to shut down in a new bankruptcy deal that would involve Sprint taking over half RadioShack's stores and possibly co-branding them, according to Bloomberg News, which cited unnamed people with knowledge of the discussions. The rest of RadioShack's stores would simply close doors.
Negotiations are still ongoing, but if the locations sold to Sprint didn't operate under a co-brand, RadioShack would cease to exist. That said, another bidder is interested in the chain: Standard General, RadioShack's largest investor, wants to be a lead bidder at a bankruptcy auction, The Wall Street Journal has reported.
RadioShack is a 94-year-old American franchise with electronics retail stores across the world, including the US and Europe. RadioShack operated in the UK under its original Tandy name until Carphone Warehouse bought the shops in 1999, but then Carphone Warehouse merged with Dixons Retail last year to form Dixons Carphone.
RadioShack first announced last autumn that it was looking at bankruptcy if talks about a sale or a restructuring didn't pan out, and then, just last week, the New York Stock Exchange issued RadioShack a warning that it could delist the retailer due to its average market capitalization staying below $50 million for more than 30 consecutive days.
RadioShack has only been able to survive in recent months largely thanks to a rescue financing package that it received from Standard General, which primarily acts as a hedge fund, in October.