Claire’s Stores Inc., a national jewelry retail chain with a ubiquitous presence in shopping malls, has announced it is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.The Hoffman Estates, Illinois-based company, which operates more than 5,300 stores in the U.S. under the Claire’s and Icing brands, claims to be in 99 percent of the nation’s malls. Claire’s Stores Inc. held $2.1 billion in debt at the end of last year and vowed to reduce its debt by $1.9 billion. It reported a net income of $28.656 million for the 12 months ending Feb. 3.
In announcing its bankruptcy filing, the company said that “unlike other retailers that have come before it, Claire’s has commenced its restructuring process from a position of unique operational strength.” It added that it was enabling the Chapter 11 process to “effectuate a balance sheet – not an operational – restructuring.”
The company said that it had no plans to shutter its retail operations during the bankruptcy process. Regionally, Claire’s and Icing stores can be found at malls in Yonkers, White Plains, Jefferson Valley, New City, West Nyack, Stamford, Danbury and Trumbull.