Although Dressbarn already has closed 100+ stores and will close its remaining 544 stores by Dec. 26, the retailer will live on online under new ownership around the start of 2020. Parent company Ascena Retail sold the Dressbarn intellectual property assets, including its e-Commerce business, to a subsidiary of Retail Ecommerce Ventures LLC.
The Dressbarn e-Commerce site will remain open for business during the store closing process and will accept gift cards and merchandise credits through Dec. 31 (or while merchandise supplies last). Retail Ecommerce Venture expects to launch the new platform and look for dressbarn.com “on or about” Jan. 1, 2020, but gift cards will no longer be accepted under the new ownership.
Dressbarn first announced it would close and liquidate all 650 of its stores in May. Liquidation sales at the remaining stores will begin Nov. 1, with merchandise selling at discounts of 20% to 40%. Store fixtures, furnishings and equipment also will be for sale. The retailer has partnered with liquidation firm Gordon Brothers to assist in the store closure process.
With the winding down of Dressbarn’s stores and the sale of its IP, Ascena Retail hopes to turn around the fortunes of its remaining retail banners, including Ann Taylor, LOFT, Lane Bryant, Catherines and Justice. During its fiscal Q4, the group finalized the sale of its Maurices division to an affiliate of British private equity firm OpCapita.
Earlier this month in a Q4 earnings call, interim Executive Chairman Carrie Teffner noted that Ascena is not considering filing for bankruptcy despite financial struggles across its brands in recent years.During the quarter, Ascena lost $420 million, or $2.12 a share, with these results negatively affected by $270 million in impairment charges.