Parent of Papyrus files for bankruptcy

Marianne Wilson
Marianne Wilson profile picture
Papyrus storefront

Greeting card and stationery company Schurman Fine Papers is shutting down its retail store operations.

The parent company of the Papyrus, American Greetings and Carlton Card store chains has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection with plans to close all its 254 locations in the U.S. and Canada during the next four to six weeks. However, cards from the brands will still be sold by other retailers.

In its filing, Schurman cited “the general downturn in the brick-and-mortar retail industry.” It also cited overexpansion during the 2007-2009 recession and the fact that it was forced to refurbish and close a large number of underperforming stores that it acquired from American Greetings Corp. in 2009.

According to its filing, the company currently has assets of $39.4 million and liabilities of $54.9 million. 

Greeting cards have been in a slump for the past several years as more and more consumers opt for digital options over paper ones. Retail space occupied by greeting card stores fell by more than 27% from 2013 to 2018, according to CoStar Group.

Schurman was founded by Marcel and Margrit Schurman in 1950 as an importer and wholesaler of greetings cards and stationery in the U.S., eventually expanding from a wholesale distributor to a retailer. In 2009, the company sold off its wholesale business, including the Papyrus brand, to American Greetings while taking on American Greetings' retail store division.

In a statement on its Facebook page, Papyrus said that "we hope that through our artistic, thoughtful greeting cards and personal expression products that we were able to inspire you to celebrate and honor the special people in your lives."