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The Arizona Republic reports that there is a new issue emerging as embattled Basha’s looks to emerge from bankruptcy - a “spectacular art collection ... conservatively valued at $16 million” that is “viewed as one of the region's most important collections of contemporary Native American and Western art,” and that was put together by company chairman Eddie Basha, and his aunt, Zelma Basha Salmeri.

According to the story, “The grocery chain and the Basha family have been trying to hold on to the more than 3,000 pieces of art, which are carried on the company's books. The company's creditors have been pressing to have the collection sold to pay debts. Its future is expected to be decided in a Chapter 11 reorganization plan that is still being hammered out between Bashas' and its creditors.”

The story continues, “Since filing for reorganization July 12, the Chandler-based grocery chain has sold airplanes, computer equipment, liquor licenses, pharmacy records and other assets to raise cash. So far, the art collection has been kept off the auction block. McGrath said the Basha family views the collection as an integral part of the company's culture and an irreplaceable community-relations asset.”
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