Women’s clothing chain Dressbarn to close all its 650 stores

(Southside Daily/Courtesy of Google maps)
(Southside Daily/Courtesy of Google maps)

Dressbarn, the women’s clothing chain that’s been around for nearly 60 years, is closing all 650 of its stores.

Dressbarn has stores in Virginia Beach, Hampton, Tabb and Williamsburg among its 20 Virginia locations.

The company’s chief financial officer, Steven Taylor, said Dressbarn has not been operating at an “acceptable level of profitability in today’s retail environment.”

Its owner, Ascena Retail Group Inc., says it wants to focus on its more profitable brands. Ascena also owns Ann Taylor, Lane Bryant and other clothing stores.

The company did not say when Dressbarn will shut all its stores. Dressbarn employs about 6,800 people. For now, all the stores are open and operating normally, Dressbarn said in a statement.

It also did not disclose how many employees would be displaced but said they would be “provided with transition support.”

After the news was announced Monday, shares of Ascena Retail Group Inc. rose 2.6 percent to $1.17 in extended trading. Shares of the Mahwah, New Jersey-based company are down more than 50 percent so far this year.

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John Mangalonzo (john@localvoicemedia.com) is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.