Just one year after its acquisition of a second distribution center inspired its company president to boldly forecast the doubling of its number of retail stores, Orscheln Farm & Home farm and supply store is closing its Falls City location on East 14th Street.
What you see is what you get — the store will remain open for another eight weeks or so, but the hours, effective immediately, have been pared to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday only and no inventory refill orders will be generated.
The local store has operated without an official “manager” for nearly a month, according to employees, and workers were notified about the impending closure late last week. When reached at company headquarters in Moberly, MO, Monday, an Orscheln corporate spokesperson divulges little information.
“It is with heavy hearts that we have decided to close our Falls City, Nebraska store,” Orscheln Director of Operations Dave Hult said, in a prepared statement. “It has been our pleasure to serve the Falls City and surrounding communities.”
Hult added that Falls City employees have been offered employment within other stores in the company and that the retail chain will honor rain checks and special orders at its locations in Sabetha, KS, or Auburn. The new Sabetha store opened last June. There are locations throughout Nebraska, including Fairbury, Beatrice, Tecumseh, and Nebraska City, and they also have stores in Maryville, MO, Marysville, KS, Savannah, MO, and Clarinda and Shenandoah, IA.
The statement was given just prior to 5 p.m. Monday and a call to Hult shortly thereafter went straight to voice mail.
The retail chain has more than 160 stores located throughout the Midwest in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma. In January 2015, Orscheln acquired a second distribution center, in addition to its hub in Moberly, which was formerly used by the defunct ALCO Stores chain. At the time, Orscheln President Stephen Chick said the 357,000 square foot distribution center, located in Abilene, KS, would make the company “poised to double the number of Orscheln Farm & Home retail stores as we continue our growth and expansion.”
The retail business is only a small fraction of the Orscheln Group, which has major investments in more than 12 companies, partnerships and joint ventures all over the world. Orscheln owns a regional real estate development company in Missouri and has manufacturing operations that supply customer groups in the military, marine and aircraft industries, to name just a few. They also have facilities in England and a trading company located in Shanghai, China.