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Cleveland millionaire Alan Jones makes bid to buy bankrupt Hardwick Clothes

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Jana Casteel performs a final inspection on a sport coat at Hardwick Clothes in Cleveland. Times Free Press photo Jana Casteel performs a final inspection on a sport coat at Hardwick Clothes in Cleveland. Times Free Press photo
CLEVELAND, TN (Times Free Press) -

Cleveland millionaire Alan Jones, who has made a fortune from his Check Into Cash business, is ready to write his own $2 million check and pump million more into reviving America's oldest privately held clothing manufacturer, also based in Cleveland.

Jones said Monday he thinks there is still a market for American-made tailored clothing and is eager to help preserve and grow back the bankrupt Hardwick Clothes Inc.

"I've watched this business over the years go down and down and I think I can bring in the talent necessary to turn this company around," Jones said in an interview from his office in Palm Beach, Fla. "I'll be the first to tell you I don't know anything about the clothing business. But I've hired a recruiting company to help bring in new talent and I know there are already a lot of good, experienced employees who work at Hardwick."

Hardwick was founded in 1880 by C.K. Hardwick and has remained in the same family ever since. But in December, the 134-year-old business filed for protection in federal bankruptcy court after it was unable to pay debts due on its employee pension program, which actuaries estimate was at least $7 million underfunded.

Read more from our news partners at the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

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