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Luxury department store chain Lord & Taylor is going out of business.
The company, which was acquired in 2019 by fashion rental subscription service Le Tote, said Thursday it will close all of its 38 stores. The retailer had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Aug. 2 in a move that analysts viewed as a likely step toward liquidation.
Lord & Taylor is one of several department stores that have filed for bankruptcy in recent months, including J.C. Penney, Neiman Marcus and Stein Mart.
J.C. Penney and Neiman Marcus are still planning to stay in business, while Stein Mart is liquidating.
Department stores have lost their competitive edge in recent years with the explosion of online retail, the decline of foot traffic to shopping malls and the emergence of nimbler physical retailers that don’t sell such a wide assortment of items.
The COVID-19 pandemic has added to their woes, having temporarily shut stores in the early going due to safety lockdowns throughout the country. Retailers that specialize in dress clothes have been particularly vulnerable, as many Americans are working from home and dressing more casually. Chains like Brooks Brothers and Men’s Wearhouse have also filed for bankruptcy.
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Lord & Taylor had already announced plans to close 24 stores as part of the bankruptcy. Going-out-of-business sales at the stores that are newly closing will begin Thursday, Aug. 27, and will be managed by liquidators Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers.
“While we are still entertaining various opportunities, we believe it is prudent to simultaneously put the remainder of the stores into liquidation to maximize value of inventory for the estate while pursuing options for the Company’s brands,” Ed Kremer, the Company’s chief restructuring officer, said in a statement.
Lord & Taylor said it’s planning “deep discounts,” including sales on inventory and the sale of in-store fixtures, furniture and equipment.
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