Fast-fashion retailer Forever 21 officially filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code on Sunday, September 29. But the millennial-loved brand is making it clear that it’s not going down without a fight.
In a letter detailing the situation to customers on September 29, the company explained that it will be closing stores across the country in a mission to reverse its fate. Forever 21 doesn’t state that exact number of closures online, but according to court documents obtained by The New York Times, the 35-year old store will close 178 stores in the United States and up to 350 overall, globally. If you’re a digital shopper, it looks like you’re in the clear…for now.
“This does NOT mean that we are going out of business,” wrote the brand in its letter to customers. “On the contrary, filing for bankruptcy protection is a deliberate and decisive step to put us on a successful track for the future.”
The shopping mall staple opened its doors in 1984 in Los Angeles, becoming a go-to destination for trendy, affordable fashion for teens and women. Over time, the brand expanded and ultimately became a one-stop shop for all, offering men’s and children’s fashion, beauty products, accessories and even home decor.
As the brand has filed for a “reorganization” bankruptcy, this does not necessarily mark the end for the retailer. But it’ll have a lot to overcome. According to bankruptcy documents, Forever 21 owes at least $1 billion dollars to more than $100,000 creditors.
“We are confident this is the right path for the long-term health of our business,” concluded Forever 21 in the letter to customers. “Once we complete a reorganization, Forever 21 will be a stronger, more viable company that is better positioned to prosper for years to come.”
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