On May 4, discount retailer Tuesday Morning became the fifth major U.S. retailer this month to file for Chapter 11 protection. Here is a running tally of pandemic-era bankruptcy filings. This list will be updated.
1. J. Crew
Annual revenue: $2.5 billion in 2019
Number of stores: 492
On May 4, J. Crew, the clothing chain known for its preppy basics, became the first major U.S. retailer to file for Chapter 11 protection.
The 73-year-old New York-based company was struggling to stay relevant long before the outbreak forced it to temporarily shutter all 492 of its J. Crew and Madewell stores. Analysts say missteps, in both fashion and finance, have left the onetime mall darling with slipping sales and nearly $2 billion in debt. Though J. Crew has not announced any store closures, analysts warn that the financial fallout from the temporary closures and reduced sales will have a domino effect across the industry, permanently altering shopping malls across the country.
2. Neiman Marcus
Annual revenue: $4.9 billion in 2018
Number of stores: 43
Neiman Marcus Group, the 113-year-old chain known for its high-end department stores, filed for bankruptcy on May 7.
The Dallas-based retailer has struggled to pay down $5 billion in debt, much of it from leveraged buyouts in 2005 and 2013. The pandemic has forced it to temporarily shutter all 43 of its stores and furlough most of its 14,000 workers. In addition to its namesake stores, it also owns Bergdorf Goodman, Horchow and Mytheresa.
The company said it is considering closing some locations but did not provide details. In a letter to customers, chief executive Geoffroy van Raemdonck stressed that the retailer is not liquidating.
3. Stage Stores
Annual revenue: $1.58 billion in 2018
Number of stores: 738
Stage Stores, which operates hundreds of Palais Royal, Bealls and Goody’s department stores, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on May 10.
The Houston-based company said it is searching for a buyer as it liquidate its stores. The retailer has 738 locations across half a dozen brands, including the off-price Gordmans chain and the Peebles and Stage department stores, in small towns and rural areas in 42 states.
4. J.C. Penney
Annual revenue: $12.02 billion in 2019
Number of stores: 850
Department store chain J.C. Penney filed for bankruptcy protection on May 15 and said it would permanently close some of its 850 locations.
The 118-year-old retailer was struggling long before the public health crisis forced it to temporarily shutter its stores and furlough the majority of its 90,000 employees. It has nearly $4 billion in debt and hasn’t turned a profit since 2010. Sales have fallen for four straight years as it struggled to win back longtime loyalists who have since gravitated to big box chains such as Target and Costco to outfit their families.
In its bankruptcy filing, J.C. Penney said it has both assets and liabilities between $1 billion and $10 billion, and it owes money to more than 100,000 creditors. It also said it would close some stores, but did not provide details on where or when.
5. Tuesday Morning
Annual revenue: $1 billion in 2019
Number of stores: 687
Discount retailer Tuesday Morning filed for bankruptcy on May 27 and said it will shut 230 locations, roughly one-third of its store holdings, this summer, after the coronavirus outbreak disrupted sales.
In its bankruptcy filing, the Dallas-based home goods chain said it owed between $50 million and $100 million to as many as 5,000 creditors.
Analysts say the retailer has struggled to set itself apart from competitors such as HomeGoods, Ross Stores and Macy’s Backstage outlets, which have gained popularity in recent years. Tuesday Morning stores, they say, tend to be unorganized and overwhelming, with a mishmash of less-than-exciting inventory.
“Many stores are not so much an Aladdin’s cave of exciting treasures as a jumbled flea market of whatever buyers could seemingly get their hands on,” Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, wrote in a note to clients. “Putting together a range requires enormous skill and a certain degree of flair. In our view, Tuesday Morning lacks both.”
6. GNC Holdings
Annual revenue: $2.07 billion in 2019
Number of stores: 5,200 U.S. stores
Vitamin and nutrition chain GNC Holdings filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on June 23, with plans to close up to 1,200 U.S. stores as it searches for a buyer.
GNC — General Nutrition Centers — was the country’s go-to retailer for vitamins, protein powders and nutritional supplements. But in recent years it has struggled for years to shore up sales as it tried to pay back more than $900 million in debt. Then came the coronavirus pandemic, which forced it to shutter about 40 percent of its stores, leading to millions in lost revenue. The company reported a $200 million loss during the first quarter of this year and last month warned that some of the company’s temporary closures could soon turn permanent.
In its bankruptcy filing, the Pittsburgh-based retailer said it had both assets and liabilities between $1 billion and $10 billion.