Reports have surfaced that Betsey Johnson LLC filed for bankruptcy protection on Thursday night in New York as a result of poor sales in its chain of retail stores. Most of the 63 Betsey Johnson stores will close in the next few weeks and 350 employees are expected to lose their jobs. Betsey, the nearly 70-year-old cartwheeling designer, will remain on board as creative director and will continue to design the lower priced Betsey Johnson line and will oversee accessories and other licenses.
Betsey Johnson’s CFO, Jonathan Friedman, issued the following statement:"The decision to seek protection under chapter 11 comes after months of rigorously pursuing alternative restructuring arrangements to address Betsey Johnson LLC’s cash flow problems. After exhausting our resources and possibilities, it became apparent that neither a restructuring arrangement with a new equity investor nor a sale of the business enterprise as a going concern outside of bankruptcy was to be forthcoming. Accordingly, our board made the determination that a Chapter 11 store closing process will likely be the best way to maximize the value of the company’s assets, for the benefit of its creditors."
“She's been having financial problems for years and she was set to close about three years ago but they managed to keep the company going for a while longer,” Squizree noted. “It's sad because she's really quite iconic. I love the whimsical personality she puts in her clothes, and I've always somewhat preferred her to Sonia Rykiel,” he added.
Psylocke posted, “Oh no, that's awful, 350 people losing their jobs. I didn't even know she had so many stores and that her business was doing badly financially. I always assumed it was doing ok since I kind of thought every girl in the US wore her dresses to prom,” she laughed. “I always enjoyed her runway shows even though her designs are not my cup of tea at all. What a shame.”
Just as Psylocke said, even if you’re not a fan of Betsey Johnson’s designs, hearing about a company’s financial troubles and the effects it will have on so many people is always hard. We wish Betsey and all of her employees the best of luck.