All Charlotte Russe stores closing

Charlotte Russe in Governor's Square Mall closing due to Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Photo Submitted by Stephanie Jenkins.

The women’s retail company Charlotte Russe announced Wednesday that it will close all 500 stores nationwide and sell its intellectual property.

The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after a month of unsuccessfully searching for a buyer and initially closing 94 stores.

According to a press release, Charlotte Russe explained its continuation to pursue a sale of its business after receiving a commitment of $50 million to pay off some of its debt.  

Charlotte Russe’s assets to the liquidation company SB360 Capital Partners LLC. was approved Wednesday by the bankruptcy court in Delaware. About $160 million in inventory will be sold through Charlotte Russe stores.

Tallahassee customers were surprised to learn about the closing of their favorite fashion brand.

“I’ve been shopping here since the eighth grade and I’m confused because I’ve never looked at them as a business that doesn’t do well,” Morgan Sadler said. “Even if people don’t shop in stores I know they still shop online.”

FAMU student Sarah Austin expressed her disappointment.

“I’ve shopped at Charlotte Russe for a long time, especially now that they’ve started to get really inclusive with their attire and bringing in a lot of plus size clothing. It’s sad to see it go,” she said.

Local customers are now turning to other affordable stores such as Forever 21, H&M, and online stores to shop.

Savvy buyers can expect discounted prices on merchandise including tops, bottoms, jeans, jackets, dresses, shoes and accessories. The company will accept gift cards through March 21, and will close all of its stores by the end of April.

Founded in 1975 in San Diego, Charlotte Russe was purchased by the private equity firm Advert International for $380 million in 2009. The company expanded in 2016 to include Peek Kids, with 10 of the high-end children’s clothing stores continuing to operate in eight states.

Charlotte Russe is not the last to come to an end. Many other high-profile chains are also having trouble keeping up in today’s retail industry.

Gap is planning to shut 230 of its stores over the next two years. Victoria’s Secret is planning to shut 53 stores this year, as the lingerie retailer struggles to appeal women with outdated bra and underwear merchandise. J.C. Penney recently announced  plans to close 18 department stores, in addition to nine home and furniture shops, in 2019. This has been yet another challenging year for retail chains.