Longtime Apple-accessory distributor Dr. Bott files for bankruptcy

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Online retailer and distributor Dr. Bott, a fixture in the Apple-accessory market since the late 1990s, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in its home state of Oregon, according to public records and information provided to Macworld. The original petition was filed on May 1, with notices sent to creditors later in the month. (Note that the petition affects only Dr. Bott LLC, a U.S. company. Several other companies use the Dr. Bott name in Europe and are not affected.)

Founded in 1999, Dr. Bott was originally a distributor providing accessories to independent Macintosh resellers. The company later expanded to work with large retailers and chains; opened its own online storefront for selling products directly to consumers; and expanded to the education market. The company’s website states that it handles thousands of different products.

As a distributor, Dr. Bott was known for providing smaller accessory vendors the means of distributing their products much more widely than they could on their own. But the company also handled products for some of the biggest names in Apple accessories, including Griffin Technologies, iLuv, Incase, Incipio, Scosche, and Speck.

dr bott macworld boothDr. Bott
The front of one of Dr. Bott’s Macworld Expo booths

Among vendors, Dr. Bott was popular for its enthusiastic efforts to promote the products it distributed, especially those from smaller vendors looking to get the word out. Edgar Matias, whose company Matias makes a line of popular Mac keyboards, told Macworld, “We’re sorry to see them go. They were our first distributor. Hopefully they can make it out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.”

Attendees to many a Macworld Expo or CES will remember the company’s huge booths showcasing up-and-coming vendors with unique—but often unknown—gear.

Though the company’s website currently advertises a Spring Cleaning Sale, sources told Macworld that the sale is mainly a way for Dr. Bott to sell off the company’s remaining inventory.

Update, 6/11/2014, 10:30am PT: Added clarification about Dr. Bott LLC in the U.S. versus European companies using the same name.

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