The Limited posted a message on its official website that said it would be closing all 250 of its stores across the U.S. The move makes the chain of women’s apparel stores the most recent high profile retailer hit hard by the growing shift of shoppers to online shopping as well as fast fashion.
The post said that the website for the chain would continue to remain open.
There was mounting evidence that problems were building at The Limited. In December’s shopping rush, the deals for 80% off and is quick decision to not allow any returns seemed characteristic for fire sales than for a holiday bonanza.
Reports arose nationwide of individual stores being closed of recent. News outlets as well in Indianapolis, New York, Illinois and Washington reported local stores being shuttered.
Owner of The Limited, Sun Capital Partners, did not make a comment when requested. A company spokesperson did say that the company would shutter its businesses by Sunday and closures would result in job cuts of more than 4,000.
The Limited at one time was the cornerstone of one of the most formidable retailing empires founded by Leslie Wexner in 1963 in a store of just 2,000 square feet and named due to its limited assortment of apparel for women.
However, business mushroomed very quickly and started to take business away from the large department stores. As it grew, so did the idea’s of Wexner who opened Express, a women’s apparel store with trendier clothing, followed by Structure a men’s apparel store.
His business today, known as L Brands, also owned for a short while places such as Lerner New York, Abercrombie & Fitch, Lane Bryant and others.
It sold The Limited during 2007 but remained the corporate parent for Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works a chain Wexner purchased in 1982 for $1 million.
Liz Dunn, the CEO of Talmage Advisors a consulting firm for retailing said that The Limited has suffered from not being able to keep up with today’s trends.
Dunn said shoppers today look for fast fashion for clothes that are hyper-relevant to what is taking place in the fashion world at the moment and that is as cheap as possible.
The sensible office attire from the Limited did not fit that desire of today’s shopper.
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