Gymboree to File for Second Bankruptcy in Two Years
Gymboree is expected to seek bankruptcy protection this week, the second time the the children’s apparel chain has done so in as many years. Gymboree Group, which includes Crazy 8 and Janie and Jack branded shops, will close all 900 stores, according to The Wall Street Journal.
This marks the second time the chain, which operates stores in the United States and Canada, has filed to restructure debt it acquired during a leveraged buyout by private equity firm Bain Capital in 2010. In 2017, Gymboree closed 380 of its 1,280 stores in a move to restructure the company and exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
The following year, during the summer of 2018, Gymboree seemed poised for a turnaround, with a focus on better quality products and merchandise. Part of that idea included selling separates and accessories that could be more easily mixed and matched, as opposed to the clothier’s earlier focus on selling complete outfits. The company also updated its retail stores, upgraded its e-commerce site, and launched a mobile shopping app.
But those improvement efforts don’t seem to have been enough to save the chain from insolvency. Fortune reached out to Gymboree Group for comment and did not immediately receive a reply. It is not clear yet when Gymboree is closing its stores. If Gymboree Group does file for bankruptcy, the closures will not impact Gymboree Play and Music, the children’s classes division of the company that has operated as a separate entity owned by Gymboree Global Education Group since 2016.