Lord & Taylor, one of the oldest department stores in the United States, will go out of business and shutter its 38 locations, marking the end of its 194-year run. It’s the latest retailer to fall during the coronavirus pandemic. The move comes just weeks after Lord & Taylor filed for bankruptcy with plans to seek a new buyer and almost exactly one year since clothing rental start-up Le Tote bought the retailer for $100 million.
Lord & Taylor originally planned to permanently close 24 stores last week as it tried to survive Chapter 11, but today the company announced it was shuttering its entire retail footprint and liquidating its merchandise. It is still looking for a buyer, the company said.
Lord & Taylor plans to start going-out-of-business sales at its stores today. The sales will be led by liquidators Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers. “Deep discounts” on merchandise are promised, according to the press release.
The department store began its life as a dry goods shop on the Lower East Side in 1826, founded by English immigrants Samuel Lord and George Washington Taylor, according to previous owner Hudson’s Bay Company’s (HBC) website. It expanded to several stores throughout Manhattan and, in 1914, opened its iconic flagship at 424 Fifth Avenue, which is soon to become home to an Amazon office.