Pier 1 files for bankruptcy amid severe drop in sales


FORT WORTH, Texas (WTNH) — Pier 1 has filed for bankruptcy protection. Their CEO says the move will give them more time to sell the company.

RELATED: Pier 1 Imports closing nearly half of stores as sales falter

The Texas-based company was founded in 1962 and has been recently been struggling with budget-friendly online retailers such as Wayfair. 

Pier 1’s sales fell 13% in its most recent quarter, which ended Nov. 30, 2019. They also reported a net loss of $59 million for the quarter because it struggled to draw customers to its stores.

Their shares have fallen 45% since the start of the year.

“Today’s actions are intended to provide Pier 1 with additional time and financial flexibility as we now work to unlock additional value for our stakeholders through a sale of the company.”

– Pier 1 CEO and Chief Financial Officer Robert Riesbeck

Riesbeck, an executive with previous corporate turnarounds, joined Pier 1 last summer. 

Pier 1 said it will pursue a sale, with a March 23 deadline to submit bids. A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. 

The company has been trying to declutter its stores, improve online sales and attract younger customers through its doors.

Last month, Pier 1 announced it would close 450 stores, including all of its stores in Canada. The company will additionally be closing two distribution centers.

The move by Pier 1 is fostering broad conversation around the generational change in consumer habits from making purchases at ‘brick and mortar’ stores to shopping mostly online for the lowest price.

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