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Gabowitz Declares Bankruptcy

The electronics retailer declared bankruptcy at the beginning of August.

After decades in East Brunswick, has closed.

According to a notice on the front door, the store filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy on Aug. 2 and a meeting with creditors is scheduled for Sept. 11 at the Clarkson S. Fisher Federal Courthouse in Trenton.

An East Brunswick institution since 1934, Gabowitz TV & Appliance carried televisions and home appliances in the latest styles and brands, including Panasonic, Whirlpool and GE. The store provides free local delivery and removal as well as complete installation services. Customers can finance their purchases at zero percent interest for one year.

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gary rivers August 15, 2012 at 05:17 AM
Gabowitz had the lowest prices in this entire area. And we recently bought a GE stove and couldn't find our model cheaper anywhere. It's sad to see a successful business come to a bitter end. OK the storefront wasn't beautiful but if you want shabby try Elizabeth, NJ. If you want to shop in new surroundings you will pay top dollar for your purchases. It was definitely wrong not to extend the warranties when the money was paid to do so. But when bankruptcy is closing in people react the same as a drowning person. Desperately clinging to everything and anything to stay afloat. I've seen it firsthand from a family member. Not very pretty. But the recession is over NOT. And they didn't build that business anyway. Just ask the president of the US.
Myrna August 15, 2012 at 02:24 PM
re: "they didn't build that business anyway. Just ask the president of the US." The point the Preisent was making is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but ALSO because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don't do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire-fghting service, had to hire their own police force, and pave the roads in front of their businessses on their own. .Obama then cited the funding of the G.I. Bill, the creation of the middle class, the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge and Hoover Dam, inventing the Internet, and landing on the moon as examples of what he was talking about. The trouble with the President's remarks? They extended beyond the 20-second attention span of this campaign. And when the EDITED version made the rounds, a conversation about social contracts was instead reduced to silly charges of socialism.
Paul F August 15, 2012 at 02:37 PM
maybe it will be another head (smoke) shop. Since the northbound side has 2, it's only right the southbound side gets one. I wonder how Derby in Highland Park is doing - hopefully they'll gain some business as a result of this.
Anita V August 15, 2012 at 08:44 PM
I too got a letter that my warranty was not going to be honored, as they didn't get paid. However, we did get good prices and services from Gabowitz over the years that I have been in East Brunswick. As far as what will come instead of Gabowitz????? I think Mayor should think/try to get some good restaurants (which normally requires a liquor licenses), and not fast food chains. We have to go to other towns for fine dinning. We really could use a Mexican restaurant in town. Restaurants offering different cuisines would be great. Instead of Nail Salons etc. I am also all for Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Wegmans etc.Again have to travel to other towns for them.
Lisa G. August 17, 2012 at 01:52 PM
Soooo sad. I have been buying all of my appliances there for years. The last time I shopped there was 2 years ago for a stove, dishwasher, and microwave. It was always the store you went to for having great pricing, a full line of manufactures to choose from, as well as very friendly and knowledgable staff to work with you. It is so sad that such a reputable store( for so many years) has resorted to cheating so many of its devoted customers. I guess that I will be going somewhere else for all of my future appliances.! As one other blogger said, band together and see if in numbers maybe something can be done. Good Luck to All!!!
Madoff Victim August 17, 2012 at 03:33 PM
Our empathy for those whose money was paid and warranty service not obtained. You feel surprised, and betrayed, especially from someone you trusted. We dealt with Kenny Kohn and Gabowitz for 20 years, purchasing numerous appliances. We always felt that we were treated royally by Kenny and crew. He was always anxious to please, often going out of his way to take care of his customer(us). When our refridgerator stopped working and all of our food was going to spoil we ordered a new fridge from Kenny. But it could not arrive from the distributor for a few days. Kenny had a temporary fridge delivered that day so our food would not spoil. We made purchases from Gabowitz not only for their fair prices, but rather because of Kenny Kohn, who we found to be a genuinely nice, caring and very decent human being (a rarity in this day and age). We are sorry to hear of people's recent, unfortunate stories of negative experiences. We are also very sorry to hear of the difficulties that Kenny Kohn and Gabowitz are going through. Things must be desperate to close a business that has been operating for so many years. Hopefully everyone's health is OK and that is not behind the closing. We are wondering where we can find another Kenny Kohn and another Gabowitz to do business with. Good luck to all (including you Kenny Kohn).
garry August 17, 2012 at 09:11 PM
There is Better Living in Jamesburg where we got are appliance's from after this whole mess started.
Lisa M. August 18, 2012 at 03:27 AM
He may have been a decent and it was a great place to shop, but looking for another Kenny Kohn to shop with?? Ridiculous! He ripped us off...period! He took money and did not deliver product, that is stealing, plan and simple.
Jean Vitta August 22, 2012 at 01:23 PM
it represents the further decline of the town. just think of the lovely sight driving north on 18 when they build the big box store with a sign saying JM EB URBAN RENEWAL LLC. will add to the other postings for head shops, tattoo parlors, smoke shops and vacant stores. time to get out now before it starts.
Myrna August 22, 2012 at 02:08 PM
Another example of the 3rd rate businesses coming to East Brunswick- a restaurant new to town , " The Tilted Kilt" is being built in the new section of Brunswick Square Mall,next to Panera Bread. I had never heard of "The Tilted KIlt," so I looked it up online. It's Hooters in kilts. The chain offers pub food- burgers, nachos, fish and chips , and beer served by young waitresses wearing skimpy bras and tiny kilts. The city of Evanston, Illinois sued sucessfully to keep them from opening downtown. A group of women employees are suing the chain for sexual harrassment. They don't seem to be especially successful as a number of franchises have had to close. But that's what's coming as part of the "upgrade" to Brunswick Square.
Phylis Landers August 29, 2012 at 06:05 PM
Kenneth Kohn was running a ponzie scheme for more than one year prior to filing bankruptcy. Store policy was 50% paid @ time of placing the order. That 50% of your money is what he was literally living on, for all personal needs. The delay in delivery was because your appliances were NEVER ORDERED from the manufacturer. I figured this out with a little "inside information" from a former employee. I confronted Mr. Kohn and appliances were delivered the next day!! I told him that I had my own way of dealing with people like him, cleared out his "upstairs office" and gave it to him straight from the hip. God helps those who help themselves! I know exactly how you feel and I did not purchase an extended warranty (never do that anyway until the unit is at least 1 year old).
Jessica B August 30, 2012 at 12:15 AM
This situation should all teach us to support our local businesses. These are the people that support your local community. I am not from East Brunswick New Jersey but after reading these comments it seems that this community is in trouble. If you don't stick together, their will not be a community anymore. Soon you will be surrounded by "Walmarts."
Hattie August 30, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Disgruntled, jobless employees aren't always the best for information. You can't just make things up and spread things like that. It's just as wrong as what you are accusing them of doing. No one lived on your money. That would show immediately if it was the case. That's clearly not what happened. Your money goes into an account. Then appliances are ordered and they get terms up to 90 days to pay for them with the manufacturers. So your exact dollars don't actually go to your appliance. It's the same in ANY business whether big box or small independent. It's not a ponzi scheme. It's business and in a bad economy it's failed business. It's sad for everyone involved. It's also not considered stealing if the money went to other orders. Sad, but true...
Christopher August 30, 2012 at 03:01 AM
Hattie, you're so wrong. Just wait it out a little longer and the evidence will emerge that the guy was a total crook. (And may very well face criminal charges.) Dont go out on a limb for this guy.
Hattie August 30, 2012 at 02:26 PM
Christopher, PAPER TRAILS ARE THE ONLY EVIDENCE. Hearsay and people's opinions mean nothing. Someone mentioned a country club membership...it's just hearsay but at a networking event I was told he hadn't paid his dues in a LONG time from someone on the board. His cars were repossessed also a long time ago. It's public record that his home and business were both in foreclosure. So where is it that he's crooking? If no personal bills were paid, where the heck do you think the money was going? Back into the business to try and make it work. There is absolutely nothing criminal about that. It's just a failed business. It sucks for everyone but it's not complex and crazy. It happens all the time. It's not like the guy rode off into the sunset in his helicopter with wads of cash. From what I would assume he's broke. I think the problem is that people want to come up with the ultimate conspiracy theory for entertainment. It just doesn't appear that any of that happened here.
Christopher August 30, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Ok, Hattie. We'll see.
Ken kohn August 31, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Consumer fraud in nj pays triple damages plus legal fees and goes past the corp veil to go after ken and mike kohn personally. Also file police reports in new Brunswick and say hi to ken at the sea bright country club were he goes with everyone's money.
Chris August 31, 2012 at 01:43 AM
Please explain how consumer fraud would pay? With what money if there is no money? You can just make money appear that doesn't exist. Oh and as for his son...he was an employee there. He had no ties to the business other than a weekly paycheck. No different than that fine little lady at the front door. So you'd be barking up the wrong tree with that one.
Ken kohn August 31, 2012 at 02:28 AM
If consumer fraud is proven you can go after an individual. Meaning they can be personally liable. So you would force a lein on them personally. Also in nj it can not be erased by bankruptcy. So for those people who think that ken and mike knew they were going out of business and never intended on delivering the merchandice there are other routes other than the gabowitz bancruptcy court hearing at the end of sept.
Chris August 31, 2012 at 03:39 PM
PSA: A lien or a judgement doesn't mean anything if the person it is against has no assets. The best bet if you're out money is to wait out the auction and see if you make it in line to collect anything.
Myrna August 31, 2012 at 04:42 PM
"Where the heck do you think the money was going? Back into the business to try and make it work. There is absolutely nothing criminal about that. It's just a failed business." If it turns out to be true that Gabowitz was accepting money from customers up until the day they filed for bankruptcy, that has to be fraud, no matter where the money went.
Ken kohn September 03, 2012 at 11:32 AM
Seems that Mike Kohn is selling his BMW M3. Feel bad for him. http://www.cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&csDlId=&csDgId=&listingId=95541320&listingRecNum=8&criteria=sf1Dir%3DDESC%26mkId%3D20005%26stkTyp%3DU%26mdId%3D21392%26rd%3D30%26crSrtFlds%3DstkTypId-feedSegId-mkId-mdId%26zc%3D08882%26rn%3D0%26PMmt%3D1-1-0%26stkTypId%3D28881%26sf2Dir%3DASC%26sf1Nm%3Dprice%26sf2Nm%3Dmiles%26isDealerGrouping%3Dfalse%26rpp%3D50%26feedSegId%3D28705&aff=national&listType=3
Marc September 05, 2012 at 02:24 AM
Relevancy?
David M October 27, 2012 at 02:46 AM
What was the name of the maintenance contract company Thanks bigdave60@optonline.net
Paula Walenta November 05, 2012 at 04:28 PM
I also bought appliances with extended warrantees, can you please provide me with the name of the extended warrantee company?
TheBigB February 04, 2013 at 08:30 PM
Paul - I don't know how they're doing, but I can personally attest to the fact that owner Mark Berkowitz is a straight-up, no B.S. guy. I went to school with Mark, and he wasn't even one of my drinking buddies in the old days. BTW → Tell Mark that "THE BIG B." sent you, he'll know who I am.
Facach February 09, 2013 at 05:48 PM
Gabowitz has been selling ship shod , seconds, damaged goods to an unknowing customer for years. I am so glad to hear they are out of business and hope they get the same misery that they've given others over the years .
Hondagurl June 07, 2013 at 11:32 PM
doesn't surprise me. he booted Zippos out of there for the spot. Now Zippos is further down rt 18. Gabowitz never had anything in stock. prices high too. figure home depot and Lowes brought him down too. My dad knew Gabowitz when he was on the East Side.
John Romano June 10, 2013 at 12:23 AM
....what I wish for ...is that on the weather / forecast update channel on Comcast (channel 101)...that they would take the Gabowitz advertisement "crawl" off the bottom of the screen telling us what a wonderful mecca of appliances it is ...since they've been out of business for several months.!!!!
Bill Holobowski January 24, 2014 at 04:30 PM
I'm not in the area much, but drove by about a week ago and was curious what happened, but based on my own experience the closure does not surprise me in the least. We spent A LOT of money there for a kitchen upgrade a few years back, on the advice of a designer that used them regularly to buy appliances. Our experience was, shall we say, less than stellar - scratched cook-top and a refrigerator that they sold us and had promised was available, but took months for us to learn (through a call to the manufacturer) that the product hadn't been made in 2+ years. The whole fridge experience took months to play out and was a headache, and I rarely get testy with people but got to the point of threatening Gabowitz with legal action if they did not act appropriately. After that, I vowed to never recommend those guys, but now the point is moot. The young salesman Mike that we dealt with was pleasant, but otherwise, I'm not surprised they're out of business.

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