Cupcake chain Crumbs Bake Shop to close all its stores

Crumbs Bake Shop shuttered its stores nationwide Monday, breaking the news to employees the same day.

Crumbs, which went public in 2011 amid a national cupcake craze, has been forced to shut down its operations as it considers remaining options for the business, a spokeswoman told The Wall Street Journal. Those options could include bankruptcy, she said.

The company had 58 stores across 12 states as of May 15, and that store count is now down to 48 stores in 10 states, the Journal reported.

The company has steadily closed stores over the past few quarters as it struggled with weak financial results amid a flagging desire for cupcakes. Crumbs has recorded 12 straight quarters of net income losses and its cash supply has dwindled to about $300,000.

“We have known for quite some time now that we needed to evolve our business model,” said CEO Edward Slezak in the recent quarterly earnings release in May. “Our focus for 2014 will be on executing our initiatives and strategies of licensing our brand for complimentary product categories, positioning ourselves to move toward a franchise store model, and continuing to close under-performing stores.”

Slezak’s plan to turn around the struggling retailer was cut short as Crumbs’ shares ceased trading July 3 after the Nasdaq Stock Market said the company failed to meet basic standards to continue operating on the market. Those standards include having a least $2.5 million in shareholder equity, or hitting benchmarks for market capitalization or annual net profit.

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