SAN FRANCISCO — Gymboree has filed for bankruptcy protection for a second time in as many years, but this time the children's clothing retailer will begin winding down operations for good.
The San Francisco company said late Wednesday that it will close all of its Gymboree and Crazy 8 stores and attempt to sell its Janie and Jack business, intellectual property and online business. Store closings could start as early as this week, the company said on its website.
"The company has worked diligently in recent months to explore options for Gymboree Group and its brands, and we are saddened and highly disappointed that we must move ahead with a wind-down of the Gymboree and Crazy 8 businesses," Gymboree Group Inc. CEO Shaz Kahng said in a prepared statement.
The company has eight stores on Long Island:
- Four Gymboree locations — at Tanger Outlets Deer Park, Tanger Outlets Riverhead, Roosevelt Field mall in Garden City and Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove
- Two Crazy 8 stores — at Sunrise Mall in Massapequa and South Shore Mall in Bay Shore
- Two Janie and Jack stores — at Tanger Oulets Deer Park and Roosevelt Field mall
Gymboree, which began offering classes for mothers and their children in 1976, has a total of 380 Gymboree stores in the United States and Canada.
Store closures “will largely take place over the next few months, although some stores may close within a shorter or longer time period. We will conduct going out of business sales at these stores,” Gymboree said on its website.
When it first sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in June 2017, Gymboree ran 1,300 stores.
About three months later, Gymboree Corp. emerged from Chapter 11 as a new corporation under the name Gymboree Group Inc.
The company has suffered in the post-recession years like almost all mall-based retail stores. Steep declines in mall traffic and the shift online have devastated many traditional retailers.
Gymboree was bought by the private equity firm Bain Capital for $1.8 billion in 2010 and taken private.
In 2016, Gymboree sold its Gymboree Play & Music business, which offers developmental play, music and art classes for children up to 5 years old, for $127.5 million to Singapore-based company Zeavion Holding.
The four Gymboree Play & Music locations on Long Island — all franchises — closed last June.
— With Tory N. Parrish