Last night, the international corporation Forever 21 announced their Chapter 11 filing of bankruptcy. This means they will be able to keep selling merchandise while they find a way to change their business plan and pay their debts.
They plan to close 178 stores in the United States, and most of their stores in Europe and Asia. There are currently over 800 stores in the United States.
“I’m sad to see them go, but I can’t say I didn’t see it coming,” said Kyla Bazzy, Arts & Entertainment Editor. “Their selection was so overwhelming that sometimes I didn’t want to go in there.”
The retailer also has a lawsuit in the works from Ariana Grande, who is suing for $10 million dollars. Forever 21 decided to name their collection “7 rings,” which is the title of one of Ariana Grande’s popular songs. The store is notorious for using slogans and food brands, however, without receiving permission, this decision will cost millions.
Five Michigan stores will be closing. The Forever 21 locations in Great Lakes Crossing, Twelve Oaks Mall, Macomb Mall, Woodland Mall and Tanger Grand Rapids will all be closing their doors.
This is not the only major retailer that has announced their store closures recently. Sears has been closing their doors for a few years, leaving local malls such as Fairlane Mall and Southland Mall. Macy’s has been closing stores in smaller numbers. Dress Barn is beginning their liquidation sales next month.
Other retailers that cater to women have filed bankruptcy. Charlotte Russe filed this year but was able to return. Wet Seal and Delia’s filed bankruptcy in the past few years. H&M closed 160 stores this year, but has plans to open 335 stores in other countries, according to AJC news.
“Without stores like this, for cheap clothing I would go to H&M or Target,” said Kinsey Burnett, News Editor. “I gave up on Forever 21 a long time ago.”
A total of over 8,200 major retailer stores have closed, just this year, according to CNN Business.
Forever 21 says the retail industry is changing. With people constantly turning to Amazon and other online shopping websites, the mall industry is taking a turn. Malls are losing several stores, and even large department stores.
Noticing this shift in the retail industry, GameStop, began renovating early this summer in hopes to change the format of their stores. Instead of being a place to just buy games, they have now installed gaming hubs for people to come and play. Now they will be able to explore the games that are in the store.
New innovative ideas will need to take place to insure the survival of the retail industry and only time will tell what this shift will become.