New York City Liz Claiborne announced Wednesday that it will close its 87 outlet stores as part of a plan to end losses at the stores. In the move, which is expected to be executed over the coming months, the company’s Liz Claiborne and Liz Claiborne New York will become exclusive brands for other retailers.
The closures affect just Liz Claiborne branded stores. Outlets for the company's Juicy Couture, Lucky Brand, Kate Spade and Kensie brands aren't affected, said the company.
"A number of factors precipitated this decision,” said William L. McComb, CEO of Liz Claiborne. “Our current fleet of Liz Claiborne branded outlet stores was originally designed and leased to handle clearance for many brands in our portfolio -- an outdated consumer proposition and one that no longer makes economic sense, given the vast changes we have made to our portfolio and business strategy over the past three years."
Liz Claiborne will take a $7 million charge in its second quarter for the closings and expects more charges for severance and lease terminations on the stores.
In October, the company announced it was moving its namesake line to J.C. Penney from Macy's and other stores and taking the line designed by Isaac Mizrahi to the TV shopping channel QVC.