Retail was on shaky ground before the coronavirus shut-down here in New Jersey, but many retail stores thought that they could survive throughout the pandemic. The latest news is that 10 retail chains have filed for bankruptcy as a direct result of the pandemic.

Remember, chapter 11 bankruptcy does not necessarily mean that stores will be closing locations. Some of these chains are going to attempt to re-organize and stay afloat while others are going to close completely. According to an article on, here is the latest list of the casualties of the COVID-19 shut down.

J.Crew, Neiman Marcus, Modell’s Sporting Goods, GNC, Chuck E. Cheese, Roots USA, True Religion, and Bluestem Brands. As you may have already known from Jeff Deminski’s piece on back in May, Pier One announced it will be closing all locations.

Pier One is not only shutting all of its stores, but is doing its best to do so quickly to stop the bloodletting as soon as possible, according to the Patch article. It quotes Pier One CEO Robert Riesbeck’s statement:. “Unfortunately, the challenging retail environment has been significantly compounded by the profound impact of COVID-19, hindering our ability to secure such a buyer and requiring us to wind down."

On a personal note, I was born in San Mateo, California, the birthplace of the first Pier One imports store. It was called cost Plus Imports back then, and it was a new, cool concept, which, according to Wikipedia “catered to hippie baby boomers and featured love beads and incense.”

I remember my mom bringing tourist friends and relatives from the east coast there and dragging me along. It seemed like a wonderland to me as a kid, and I’ll miss it. The article also notes that Sears, Kmart, JoAnn Stores and David's Bridal I reported to be nearing bankruptcy, too. Another sad day for retail in New Jersey, indeed.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.

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