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Healthy Back Store's owner ready for his second chance - Washington Post

Anthony Mazlish is on his second try. The 50-year-old founder of Healthy Back Store, a Rockville-based chain of mattress and chair stores catering to people with ailing backs, is at the helm of a reconstituted 10-location chain. It emerged from bankruptcy a week ago. He closed a bunch of money-losing shops, his equity holders were wiped out, bad leases were flushed, he refocused his sales strategy, and has lined up new investors and credit lines. While I write mostly about successful entrepreneurs and the businesses they create, it’s not as if there are never failures and bumps along the way. Most entrepreneurs will tell you they’ve failed a few times. They sometimes make enemies. They disappoint investors. But life, in my mind, is about persistence. Healthy Back is a cautionary tale about what can happen to a business that began above a Cleveland Park garage in 1993 and got a lot right. Mazlish, though, also got a few things wrong, which turned out to be enough to overwhelm a $40 million business with 23 stores across seven states. Mazlish is nothing if not a dreamy self-starter. While in college, the Duke University art history major (and basketball junkie) launched a sweatpants business called No Sweat. Other start-ups included a glossy student catalogue that flopped but left him with several dozen pairs of Ray Ban sunglasses from the inventory. The leftovers served as the seed for Ray Ban Man, a seasonal business that he ran for several years in Washington. After earning an MBA from Georgetown University in 1992, Mazlish took a job at an investment fund that sunk money into Hungarian enterprises during the post-communist 1990s. He learned how to assess investments, and even sat on the board of a... That’s right, life preservers. I guess someone has to sell them. He had a bad back, so he opted for back stores. Mazlish put up $24,000 from his retirement savings and raised an additional $160,000 from friends and family. The first store opened in Rockville in March 1994. He wanted a bigger space on a side street, but a smart real estate broker told him smaller on Rockville Pike was better. The store racked up $750,000 in sales in. Source: www.washingtonpost.com

You know the jingle: D.C.-area retailer files for Chapter 11 - Washington Business Journal (blog)

The Healthy Back Store LLC, the Beltsville-based retailer that can take credit for thousands of ergonomically supported backs over the past 20 years, has filed for Chapter 11 reorganization. The company with the catchy jingle filed the Chapter 11 petition in U. S. Bankruptcy Court’s southern Maryland division April 1, listing liabilities of $6,402,203 and assets of $5,113,971. The largest creditor is Syosset, New York-based Northwood... That proposed sale would be subject to higher and better offers, per bankruptcy law. An auction for the company's assets has been scheduled for May 26, with a hearing for those who object to the sale scheduled for May 27, according to bankruptcy court filings. Healthy Back has 11 stores spread between the D. C. area — including Tysons Corner and Rockville — and Kentucky and California. It also hosts an online platform for selling its office chairs, mattresses, massage chairs and other items meant to support a healthy back. Mazlish own bad back led him found the niche retail business in 1994. Mazlish is also listed as one of the store's biggest creditors. he is owed nearly $219,000. Not surprisingly, so is local news radio station WTOP, whose air has probably carried hours of the store's advertising over the years. WTOP and the Washington Business Journal are broadcasting partners. We’ve reached out to Mazlish and will update this story if we hear from him. Healthy Back had been trying to "restructure or sell some or all of its stores" for more than 18 months, according to the filing. "Amongst others, the debtor engaged in discussions with other competitors in the industry and others with regards to purchasing assets and/or investing equity in the debtor," according to the filing. "No offers were received. Healthy Back acquired a chain of Better Back stores out of Colorado in 1999 and acquired local competitor JoAnne’s Bed & Back in 2008, closing many of that chain’s underperforming stores in the wake of the economic downturn. At the time, the company said the acquisition made Healthy Back the “largest company-owned back store retail chain. ” In 2008, Healthy Back had 18 of its own stores and planned to continue to operate nine of the JoAnne’s locations. Source: www.bizjournals.com

Achy? Feeling stressed? Relax the Back opens - The Courier-Journal

There's a new place in Louisville to find relief — the Relax the Back store, which recently opened in the Forum Shopping Center adjacent to Lucky's market. Relax the Back is the largest retailer of ergonomic products to prevent and relieve back and neck pain. Consultants are trained in the common back and neck disorders that people deal with. They take a holistic approach to spinal health through sleep, recliners, massage, fitness, travel and office products. You'll find products such as pressure-relieving mattresses and pillows, zero gravity recliners, standing desks, massage chairs, lumbar supports and more. MORE SHOP TALK | Locust Grove to hold spring Used Book Sale. MORE SHOP TALK | Merle Norman Cosmetics to re-open at Oxmoor. Relax the Back Louisville is at 260 N. Hurstbourne Parkway. Hours are Monday-Saturday, 10 a. m. -6 p. m. For more information: relaxtheback. com or call (502) 384-7928 beginning Monday. Source: www.courier-journal.com

Latest News

  • Healthy Back Store's owner ready for his second chance

    06/08/15 ,via Washington Post

    Anthony Mazlish is on his second try. The 50-year-old founder of Healthy Back Store, a Rockville-based chain of mattress and chair stores catering to people with ailing backs, is at the helm of a reconstituted 10-location chain. It emerged from

  • You know the jingle: D.C.-area retailer files for Chapter 11

    The Healthy Back Store LLC, the Beltsville-based retailer that can take credit for thousands of ergonomically supported backs over the past 20 years, has filed for Chapter 11 reorganization. The company with the catchy jingle filed the Chapter 11

  • Maryland's Healthy Back Store Files for Bankruptcy

    The Healthy Back Store LLC, a Maryland-based retailer of Herman Miller chairs and Tempur-Pedic mattresses, filed Wednesday for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The chain, based in Beltsville, Md., outside of Washington, D.C., intends to sell its 10

  • Achy? Feeling stressed? Relax the Back opens

    02/13/15 ,via The Courier-Journal

    There's a new place in Louisville to find relief — the Relax the Back store, which recently opened in the Forum Shopping Center adjacent to Lucky's market. Relax the Back is the largest retailer of ergonomic products to prevent and relieve back and

  • ICYMI: Watkins portrait returned; porn store closes

    12/01/14 ,via Winona Daily News

    The Hilltop Bar and Ballroom in Fountain City has remained a faithful venue for various club meetings, banquets, weddings, anniversaries and broasted chicken nights for the past 21 years. Mary and the late Gary Dienger of Alma, Wis., bought the Hilltop

Bing news feed

  • Amia chairs recalled due to fall hazard

    01/18/12 ,via Consumer Reports

    The recalled chairs were sold for $350 to $700, at authorized Steelcase dealers and retail outlets including Healthy Back Store, CSN, Home Office Solutions, Office & Company, and Sam Flax stores nationwide and online at www.store.steelcase.com from March ...

  • My Captain Kirk Chair

    04/04/12 ,via Examiner

    Yech. The next stop was the local Back store. I always think of that Seinfeld episode where they poked fun at them – the Lumbar Yard as I recall. But they had what I wanted. My new chair was made in Canada by a company called Lifeform. It his highly ...

  • Amia Desk Chairs Recalled by Steelcase Inc.

    01/20/12 ,via Live Science

    About 11,000 Amia desk chairs by Steelcase Inc., of Grand Rapids ... Sold at: Authorized Steelcase dealers and retail outlets including Healthy Back Store, CSN, Home Office Solutions, Office & Company and Sam Flax stores nationwide and online at ...

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