On Monday, May 20th, Ascena Retail Group announced that they would be closing all 650 of their Dressbarn stores. The goal with closing these stores is to focus on their more profitable brands. Ascena Retail Group also owns the Ann Taylor and Loft stores.

Dressbarn CFO Steven Taylor stated, “The Dressbarn chain has not been operating at an acceptable level of profitability in today’s retail environment.”

Customers will still be able to shop at Dressbarn locations and online as there is not a set closure date yet. The company also stated that employees will be updated during the decision making process about when each specific location will close. Dressbarn is just one of 6,000 retail chain closures that have been announced this year. These include companies mentioned in previous blogs, as in Payless ShoeSource and Charlotte Russe. 2019 has already surpassed 2018 in amount of store closures, according to a retail real estate tracker by Coresight Research. Dressbarn has been around for over fifty years, but has always struggled to grow while competing with fast-fashion stores like H&M, and chains like TJ Maxx.

It is sad to see a retail establishment that has been around for so long go out of business. Different generations are seeking different types of style and this is causing the older chains to go out of business. It is always a good idea to keep an eye on the market and see if there is something you can do to better fit it. This is why a lot of stores are moving to create more of an online presence. Business must keep moving forward or risk being stuck in the past.

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