SHUT DOWN

Over 7,000 store closures were announced as early as 2019.
Time

The jewelry and accessories retailer Charming Charlie filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday and plans to close down all 261 stores in 38 states.

The filing marks the company's second Chapter 11 case, which is considered a "Chapter 22" bankruptcy by professionals in the restructuring industry.

The charming Charlie closed about 100 stores during his previous bankruptcy, which ended in April 2018. The retailer used this method to reduce debt and cut other costs, but "these efforts were simply not enough to stabilize the business" and generate profits, the company said Thursday in a lawsuit.

The company faced "unsustainable operating costs including onerous leases" at a time when many brick-and-mortar stores were struggling with online retailers.

According to Coresight Research, more than 7,000 branch closures are already in the retail sector, or have already been completed in 2019. (See the closures here.)

The charming Charlie sells handbags, clothes and other accessories. (Photo: Getty Images)

Charming Charlie has already started selling out-of-business products. The company expects to clear its business until 31 August, according to a court. Hilco Merchant Resources and the SB360 Capital Partners handle liquidation.

Further store closures follow: An estimated 12,000 stores could close by the end of 2019

Similar trends have hit competitors like the mall chain Claire's, which filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 in 2018.

Founded in 2004 by Charles Chanaratsopon, Charming Charlie sells jewelry, handbags, apparel, gifts and other items – with a particular focus on colorful products. The company had grown to more than 390 locations in the US, Canada, the Middle East and the Philippines by the end of 2017.

Texas, Florida and California together have about 75 Charming Charlie stores.

The company considered women between the ages of 35 and 55 to be its "core customer base," said CFO Alvaro Bellon in a lawsuit.

Follow USA TODAY reporter Nathan Bomey on Twitter @NathanBomey,

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