So continues the retail apocalypse, accelerated all the more by covid-19 and (once) widespread lockdowns: Lord & Taylor has filed for bankruptcy.
The New York Times reports that the nearly 200-year-old department store filed for Chapter 11 protection on Sunday, nearly three years after they sold their landmark flagship on New York City’s Fifth Avenue (to a WeWork, which probably isn’t working out either). Lord & Taylor’s been on a chopping block of sorts for a while now, and last year, parent company Hudson’s Bay sold them to San Francisco clothing rental startup Le Tote for $100 million. Considering clothing rental is probably even less lucrative at the moment than department store shopping, it seems this deal hasn’t worked out for either company, and Le Tote is also filing for bankruptcy.
Department stores have struggled to keep up with the rise of online shopping, and even ahead of the pandemic, big names like Macy’s and Barney’s were already shuttering stores and/or closing up altogether. Still, we’ve seen a retail slaughter over the last few months. J. Crew, Neiman Marcus, Ann Taylor, J.C. Penney, and Brooks Brothers have all filed for bankruptcy, and this is just the beginning. The retail landscape will be very different on the other side of this, assuming, of course, that there is another side.