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Wednesday February 24, 2021
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Loves Quickly Follows Art Van into Bankruptcy.

Recrimination continues.

by Micheline Maynard

From the February, 2021 issue

It's been a tumultuous year for the former Art Van Furniture location on Eisenhower. Last March, Art Van closed the store after the parent company filed for bankruptcy.

The store reopened last fall as a branch of Loves Furniture, which acquired twenty-seven former Art Van stores during the bankruptcy proceedings.

Loves, named for Dallas investor Jeff Love, hired many of the Art Van veterans who felt ignored when Art Van was sold to a hedge fund in 2017 (Marketplace Changes, December 2020). Now, Loves has left the stage, too.

The Ann Arbor store closed the same month we wrote about it, and in January the entire chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. It expects to keep only thirteen stores, just one of them in Michigan.

Loves blamed industry-wide supply disruptions that resulted from the pandemic. In its bankruptcy filing, Loves said that there were additional logistics issues that resulted in the wrong furniture being sent to the wrong stores. Hundreds of orders were delayed because Loves could not locate the furniture customers had ordered, the court papers said.

Shortly before the bankruptcy filing, Loves was sued by a vendor, alleging that it had yet to be paid for $2 million in furniture that Loves ordered.

Although liquidation events are taking place at four Detroit-area Loves stores, the Ann Arbor store is scheduled to get a new life in early March, when it becomes a Value City Furniture store.

That move was announced in December by Value City, which acquired six former Art Van stores across Michigan.

Value City, founded in 1948, offers customers "designer furniture without the designer prices." It says it plans to add 'sixty-five jobs at locations in Ann Arbor and a store in Westland and says it will give preference to previous Art Van and Loves employees.


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