jewelry: February 2009 Archives

Iridesse closing

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Tiffany is closing its Iridesse stores. Iridesse, a specialty boutique dedicated to pearls, had 16 stores. Performance was disappointing at the chain, which opened in 2004.

More jewelry store closings

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Multi-brand jeweler Finlay Enterprises is closing 40 stores and exiting its department store businesses to focus on profitable locations. The move affects a wide array of department stores including Bloomingdale's, Macy's, Lord & Taylor, and Dillard's.

Finlay owns specialty jewelry stores Bailey Banks & Biddle, Carlyle & Co. and others. The company did not announce which of these would be affected by the 40 closings.

Update: Fortunoff

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Bankrupt retailer Fortunoff is giving up on an acquisition and beginning liquidation sales today. Liquidators announced the sales would be business as usual and that they would honor outstanding gift cards. Fortunoff closed its flagship store at the start of February and entered into bankruptcy a few days later.

Fortunoff is an interesting bankrupty because of the fond memories people have of its family-owned roots. While its failure is a private-equity and debt-load story, many people remember it as the longtime regional retailer with family roots, making its closure a bit more poignant than other large stores.

More Zales store closings

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National jeweler Zales is closing 115 stores to improve profitability. The company discounted much of its merchandise in recent months and performance suffered accordingly. Zales closed 105 stores in 2008 based on performance. Zales has more than 2,000 locations.

Old and local stores, February edition

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The economic downturn is hitting local stores especially hard. Saddest among those affected are the decades-old establishments, many involved in housing and home goods, suddenly facing bankruptcy or liquidation.

Some recent changes of note:

Fortunoff misfortune

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Venerable retailer Fortunoff has closed its flagship store and is discussing liquidation and bankruptcy options. The company, which sells jewelry, silverware and home goods products, has been in business since 1922. Fortunoff entered bankruptcy a year ago and was purchased by the same parent company as Lord & Taylor.

Fortunoff moved its flagship Manhattan store to 57th Street just off Fifth Avenue in autumn 2007, vacating its old Fifth Avenue location at its landlord's request. The lease at West 57th expired last month, suggesting the move was temporary in nature and the closing expected internally. The company's website notes the closed location without further comment. Another 20 stores are reportedly still open for business.

Update: Fortunoff filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as expected Thursday Feb. 5. The company hopes to be acquired; if not, the chain will close rather than reorganize.

Timely Demise tracks the retail industry as it changes with our unprecedented economic environment. Published by David Wertheimer. Did I miss something? Drop me a line.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the jewelry category from February 2009.

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