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Gymboree announces bankruptcy. Here’s what it could mean for the mall mainstay

Children’s clothing retailer Gymboree Corp. is planning on closing all its Gymboree and Crazy 8 locations at the end of 2019.
Children’s clothing retailer Gymboree Corp. is planning on closing all its Gymboree and Crazy 8 locations at the end of 2019. AP

Children’s clothing retailer Gymboree Group Inc. announced late Wednesday night that the company would file for bankruptcy and close all its Gymboree and Crazy 8 stores by the end of 2019. There are more than 20 Gymboree and Crazy 8 locations in Dallas-Fort Worth.

The San Francisco-based company also owns and operates a high-end fashion line with Janie and Jack. The company said in a news release that it would look to sell its Janie and Jack brand. There are six Janie and Jack locations in the DFW area.

“We are saddened and highly disappointed that we must move ahead with a wind-down of the Gymboree and Crazy 8 businesses,” said Shaz Kahng, CEO of Gymboree Group Inc., in the release. “At the same time, we are focused on using this process to preserve the Janie and Jack business — a strong brand that is poised to grow — by pursuing the sale of the business as a going concern.”

Gymboree Group Inc. operates 900 brick and mortar stores in the U.S. and Canada. By Thursday morning, employees were being notified of the company’s bankruptcy and plans to close for good.

Several malls in the DFW area were reached for comment. Simon Property Group, which owns and operates North East and Grapevine Mills malls — both of which have a Gymboree and a Crazy 8 — said that the company does not speak on behalf of the retailers who lease space in their malls.

Gymboree, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the summer of 2017, had already closed half of their more than 1,281 locations that year.

It’s not the first major retailer brand and shopping mall mainstay to fall in recent years. Last year alone, well-known stores like Brookstone, Sears, KMart and Toys R Us closed hundreds of stores, thanks in large part to the growth of online shopping.



Carla Jimenez covers breaking business news and commercial retail development. Born and raised in Euless, she took a detour in the Midwest for a few years, but she’s back in the land of football, barbecue and Dr Pepper.
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