Lord & Taylor may file for bankruptcy and liquidate stores when they reopen

Lord & Taylor will likely file for bankruptcy and liquidate all 38 of its remaining stores once they reopen, according to a report from Reuters.

The department store is one of the anchor stores at the Quaker Bridge Mall on Route 1 north in Lawrence. The mall also has a Macy’s and a J.C. Penny.

According to the report from Reuters, Lord & Taylor plans to file for bankruptcy after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, and the company does not expect to survive the crisis. The company had been exploring filing for bankruptcy, trying to negotiate relief from creditors, or finding additional financing. According to the Reuters report, it is still possible that external funding or some other intervention can rescue the company, which is owned by fashion rental service start-up Le Tote, which acquired Lord & Taylor last year from the Saks Fifth Avenue owner Hudson’s Bay Company for $71 million.

Lord & Taylor is preparing to liquidate its inventory as soon as the stores reopen in order to generate cash. Lord & Taylor is holding off on a bankruptcy filing and subsequent liquidation until it can reopen its stores to attract those shoppers.

Other department store operators and retailers are also struggling to survive. On Monday, J.Crew filed for bankruptcy protection with a plan to avoid liquidation and reorganize its debts thanks to an agreement with its creditors. Nordstrom announced plans this week to close 16 of its 116 stores. Other companies like Neiman Marcus and Brooks Brothers are also weighing filing for bankruptcy.