Ann Taylor And Lane Bryant Retail Operator To Close Stores

Store Closures and Retail Bankruptcies

Brick-and-mortar stores are having a moment.

Retail operator Ascena Retail Group has shared its plans to close hundreds of stores following a disappointing quarter.

Owner of brands like women’s clothing stores Ann Taylor, Lane Bryant and Dressbarn, Ascena Retail Group had a $1.031 billion loss in Q3 on top of a $1.3 billion charge to write down its goodwill and intangible assets.

While the company reported a $15 million net income last year, net sales overall fell from $1.669 billion down to $1.565 billion. Out of its 4,800 brick-and-mortar locations, Ascena will be closing 250 stores by the end of this July.

While no specific women’s clothing store brands are being targeted for these closures, the particular locations seeing a shutdown will be evaluated based on individual performance.

Ascena CEO David Jaffe is confident about the company’s decision to move forward. He said, “Over the next two years, we expect to close or achieve substantial rent reductions in more than 650 stores, which represent almost 25 percent of the total store population with lease term maturity between 2017 and July 2019. We expect our fleet optimization program will be earning accretive and will deliver working capital benefits.”