Reuters: Lord & Taylor to liquidate its stores as soon as they reopen

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Reuters: Lord & Taylor to liquidate its stores as soon as they reopen

By Marianne Wilson - 05/06/2020
Lord & Taylor Building in NYC

One of the world’s oldest department store companies is reportedly going to call it quits.

Lord & Taylor, which was founded in New York City in 1826, plans to liquidate the inventory in its 38 stores as soon as they are reopened following their temporary shuttering due to COVID-19, reported Reuters. The department store retailer is getting ready for a bankruptcy process from which it does not expect to emerge, the report continued, but is holding off the filing and liquidation until it can reopen its stores to sell off the merchandise. (The news comes on the heels of a bankruptcy filing by J.Crew Group with a plan to reorganize its debts and remain in business.)

Investment firm NRDC Equity Partners acquired Lord & Taylor for $1.2 billion in 2006, and it went on to become part of Hudson’s Bay. In August 2019, Hudson’s Bay, whose holdings also include Saks Fifth Avenue, sold Lord & Taylor to apparel rental service Le Tote. Under the terms of the deal, Le Tote acquired the Lord & Taylor brand, related intellectual property and assumed operations of the chain’s 38 stores, its digital channels, and the associated inventory. Hudson’s Bay retained ownership of Lord & Taylor’s owned and ground-leased real estate assets, and assumed responsibility for its rent payments.

According to the Reuters report, is it still possible that external funding or some other intervention could rescue Lord & Taylor.