Despite high consumer spending that lifted economy in the United States, over a dozen of retailers filed for bankruptcy protection in 2018. Several big names of departmental stores, shoe companies, and mattress sellers have come up, CNBC news reported. Although the pace of closures have reduced from 2017 when more than 20 retailers including Toys R Us, Gymboree and Hhgregg went bust, bankrupt filings and store closures are still affecting the employees as well as owner who are struggling with the aftermath.
According to CNBC news, the biggest bankrupt of 2018 was ‘Sears’, a 125-year-old business that was once America’s largest retailer. In an attempt to raise funds, the company shut down hundreds of stores and sold other assets. The department store chain’s fate is still uncertain heading into 2019, as Eddie Lampert, Sear’s chairman is making efforts to buy back the remaining stores.
On the other hand, companies such as Walmart and Target increased investments in their retail stores as well as e-commerce operations in 2018, thereby expected to have had a strong holiday season.
Here’s a list of five retailers that filed for bankruptcy in 2018
The parent of retail stores Sears and Kmart filed for bankruptcy on October 15, after years of trying to keep the business alive by shutting down several stores and through financial maneuvering. Recently, to save about 400 stores from going dark, the chairman submitted a bid worth $4.4 billion through ESL Investments and hedge fund. If the bankruptcy court rejects the bid, Sears may still face liquidation, CNBC reported.
In October, the largest mattress retailer in the United States filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Before emerging from bankruptcy in mid-November, Mattress Firm shut around 900 stores of its total of 3,500 stores across the country.
It also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in December, vowing to keep all the stores open at the time of restructuring process. The wedding dress retailers accumulated heavy debt load amid changing consumer preferences in the high-functioning industry. In bankruptcy, it approached a deal with lender to decrease its debt by over $400 million.
The accessories store chain went bankrupt and filed for its protection in March 2018 to reduce its debt by around $2 billion. Due to consumers’ increasing shift to online, sales of Claire’s declined and struggled with a heavy debt load. It emerged from the bankruptcy in mid-October, and saved a capital of $575 million to help through the holiday season.
The massage chair and tech gadgets seller filed for bankruptcy in August and as a result, it plans to shut its 101 locations in shopping malls in the U.S.