Tim Hortons shops in International Falls, Brainerd, Bemidji and St. Cloud all close

Tim Hortons is all but extinct in Minnesota at this point.
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At the start of May, Tim Hortons locations around the Twin Cities began closing without warning.

Now, the coffee and doughnut chain's shops across Greater Minnesota appear to have toppled just as quickly.

Tim Hortons in International Falls closed Monday, with employees only told of the news Sunday night, the International Falls Journal reports.

And Tuesday was the final day of business for the locations in Brainerd (Brained Dispatch), Bemidji (Bemidji Pioneer) and St. Cloud (St. Cloud Times)

That leaves one remaining place to get Tim Hortons in Minnesota, according to the company's website: Mahnomen's Shooting Star Casino. An employee who answered the phone Thursday morning told Bring Me The News the casino doesn't have an actual Tim Hortons shop there, but does serve Tim Hortons products.

If you're keeping track at home, that means within less than three years, Tim Hortons went from publicizing an ambitious 14-year plan to expand into Minnesota, to being on the verge of extinction within the state.

At the heart of the matter seems to be a dispute between the Minnesota franchise operators, Tim-Minn, Inc, and the parent Tim Hortons company.

The Star Tribune in December 2017 reported seven Tim Hortons locations in the Twin Cities were sued by the parent Tim Hortons for not paying franchise fees. And in February this year Tim-Minn sued Tim Hortons for price gouging, the Times Colonist reported.

The suit claims Tim Hortons made false and misleading statements, prompting Tim-Minn to invest millions of dollars in plans to open 280 restaurants in the state - which Tim-Minn can't afford to operate.

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