New York & Co. Owner RTW Retailwinds Files for Bankruptcy
New York & Co. parent company RTW Retailwinds announced Monday it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and plans to permanently close most, if not all, of its stores. The company said it has kicked off liquidation sales already, with about 92 percent of its brick-and-mortar locations back open during the coronavirus pandemic. RTW Retailwinds said it's evaluating potentially selling its e-commerce operations and related intellectual property in bankruptcy proceedings. RTW Retailwinds operates 378 retail and outlet stores in 32 states, according to its website. In addition to New York & Co., some of its other brands include Fashion to Figure and Happy x Nature.
Total Retail's Take: The list of 2020 retail bankruptcies grows by the day, with RTW Retailwinds the latest retailer to seek a path forward via Chapter 11 protection. Many traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, particularly those in the glutted specialty apparel sector, entered this year on tenuous footing. The coronavirus, and its ensuring closure of stores, was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back for many retailers. What will be interesting to track is how many of these retailers, whether it be Neiman Marcus, J.Crew, Brooks Brothers, are able to recover — most likely through the sale of assets such as real estate and intellectual property, which will provide much needed cash flow — and remain viable businesses going forward. The retail landscape is likely to be permanently altered, but by how much.