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Retailer Things Remembered And 2 Others Go Bankrupt, Struggle Not To Be Things Forgotten

Gift retailer Things Remembered has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will close most of its stores, though gift distributor Enesco agreed to buy the brand and keep a fraction of its stores open.


Things Remembered's move comes on the heels of two other retail bankruptcies announced this week, those of clothier Charlotte Russe and plus-size specialist FullBeauty Brands.

Things Remembered has about 400 stores. The deal with Itasca, Illinois-based Enesco, which is owned by private equity firm Balmoral Funds,  would keep at least 50 stores open, possibly more, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Charlotte Russe is planning to close 94 of its roughly 500 stores for now and put itself up for sale. The company will completely liquidate if it can't find a buyer by Feb. 17, USA Today reports.

FullBeauty Brands won approval of its bankruptcy in an unusually short 24 hours. Its restructuring plan hands over the company to lenders and cuts about $900M in debt, Retail Dive reports.

Presumably changing consumer habits helped push all of these retailers over the edge, but there were specific problems as well. 

Things Remembered was weighed down by about $120M in debt, the legacy of previous ownership by a private equity investor, according to Reuters.

FullBeauty Brands has faced stiffer competition recently as major retailers such as Target and Old Navy expanded their offerings of plus-size clothes, Retail Dive reports.

According to retail consultant Steve Dennis, writing in Forbes, a retailer's move to cut store numbers suddenly usually indicates a deeper problem than lagging sales or heightened competition.

"If management is only taking aggressive action now, we can be fairly certain that they have not been paying enough attention for some time and were too cowardly to act," Dennis writes.