MAY 22, 2019 4:30 AM
Another retailer is closing its doors.
Dress Barn, the women's clothing chain that's been around for nearly 60 years, is closing all 650 of its stores.
The company's chief financial officer, Steven Taylor, said Dress Barn has not been operating at an "acceptable level of profitability in today's retail environment."
Its owner, Ascena Retail Group Inc., says it wants to focus on its more profitable brands. Ascena also owns Ann Taylor, Lane Bryant and other clothing stores.
The company did not say when Dress Barn will shut all its stores. Dressbarn employs about 6,800 people.
In the Pittsburgh area, Dress Barn stores are located in North Fayette at the Pointe shopping plaza; at the Miracle Mile Shopping Center in Monroeville; Cranberry, Grove City, Greensburg and Altoona.
After the news was announced Monday, shares of Ascena Retail Group Inc. rose 2.6% to $1.17 in extended trading. Shares of the Mahwah, New Jersey-based company are down more than 50% so far this year.
Gary Muto, the chief executive of Ascena Retail Group, wrote a letter to customers about the news and thanked them for 57 years of loyalty.
“It has been our pleasure to serve you, making it all the more difficult to let you know that the decision has been made to begin winding down the Dressbarn business,” Mr. Muto said. “This means that we will eventually be closing all of our stores.”
In the past year, retailers Bon-Ton, Toys ‘R’ Us, Charlotte Russe, Gymboree and Payless ShoeSource have filed or plan to file for bankruptcy.
Payless plans to close 2,300 stores in North America by the end of this month, in what is expected to be the biggest liquidation of a retailer by store count. Gymboree started closing 749 Gymboree and Crazy 8 stores in the United States in January.
Also, the personalized engraving retailer Things Remembered, which filed for bankruptcy this year, has closed more than 200 stores.