Fred’s Inc., a discount retail and pharmacy chain, has filed for bankruptcy, according to a press release from the company.

The Associated Press reported the company will be closing existing stores over the next two months. There are four North Carolina Fred’s Inc. stores located in Lenoir, Bryson City, Burnsville and Canton.

“Despite our team’s best efforts, we were not able to avoid this outcome,” said Joe Anto, Chief Executive Officer at Fred’s via the press release. “I want to thank all of our employees for their hard work and continued support of the company as we wind-down our operations.”

The company said it expects to continue filling prescriptions at its pharmacy locations, while pursuing the sale of its pharmacies, according to the release.

Fred’s started in 1947. Fred’s said earlier this year it was closing more than 280 under-performing stores in 13 states. There are four stores remaining in North Carolina.

Fred’s has also filed a motion with U.S. Bankruptcy Court seeking up to $35 million for a financing agreement with certain lenders, according to the release.

For more information, call the company’s claims agent, Epiq Corporate Restructuring, LLC, at +1 (855) 543-5393 or by email to

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