Lord & Taylor reportedly prepping to liquidate

Dive Brief:

  • When Lord & Taylor’s 38 stores reopen after pandemic-related restrictions ease, they may be running liquidation sales ahead of shuttering permanently. Reuters reported the news on Tuesday, citing unnamed sources.
  • The department store, now owned by online apparel rental company Le Tote, is delaying a bankruptcy filing in order to make the most of such sales, but has been in touch with liquidators, according to the report. A company spokesperson declined to comment to Retail Dive on the news.
  • Hudson’s Bay Co., which last August sold Lord & Taylor to Le Tote for $100 million, held on to some real estate in that deal and may take advantage of a bankruptcy to reassume some leases, Reuters said.

Dive Insight:

The COVID-19 pandemic has been rough on consumer-facing businesses, and fragile retailers like Lord & Taylor are especially at risk.

Le Tote, which had hoped to leverage Lord & Taylor locations to expand its apparel rental operations, early last month announced layoffs of most its workers, at both its namesake company and at Lord & Taylor.