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Horrible News: Syms and Filene’s Basement to Close All Stores, Ending a Beautiful Era

When I was a little girl, I hated Syms.

My mother would drag me there – she loves the place, and I’d sit pouting in the corner as she tried on several dozen pairs of jeans, all with labels of mysterious colors, telling me about the magic of the bargain – and how this was an institution built on the thrill (and skill) of the hunt.

Considering the line of work I went into, one may say this was a formative experience for me – maybe, maybe not. As I got older, I learned to appreciate Syms (AMAZING shoe section). But I never, ever, ceased to love Filene’s Basement.

So imagine my heartbreak today when I learned that Filene’s Basement and its parent company, Syms Corp., have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.The stores are going to be liquidated and closed. Bloomberg reports that the company plans to begin going-out-of-business sales before Black Friday.

Syms CEO Marcy Syms says, “This has been a challenging time for Syms and Filene’s Basement. We have been faced with increased competition from large department stores that now offer the same brands as our stores at similar discounts; a proliferation of private label discount chains; a decline in buying opportunities as brand name labels have reduced overruns by improving their supply chain management – all combined with the worst economic downturn in our lifetimes. All these factors affected both chains and they came at a time when Filene’s Basement, which was just emerging from bankruptcy, was already waging an uphill battle to rebuild its customer base.”

Obviously, this will be the place to find holiday bargains before Black Friday. But more so, go buy something. Show them they are loved, appreciated, shall never be forgotten – and will always be missed.

It’s a sad day in the bargain world. :-(



3 Comments

  1. Deborah Rosen
    11.3.2011

    That’s sad news. :(

  2. nancy reid
    11.5.2011

    terrible news ~ hubs and son gets their suits and tux there

  3. Cathy B*****y
    11.12.2011

    What sad news! Growing up not far from Boston, Filene’s Basement was where I learned about “buying quality & name brands for less”. We were always asking friends and family friends when the next “big sale event” was occurring. And of course, it was the first place where we learned about the “run of the brides!”… in fact, one year, we went to their bridal sale event just to watch… believe me, unless one is strong and nimble and has a team organized to shop with you, you wouldn’t want to have been there alone! LOL…. Filene’s Basement is/was a place where many of us learned about name brands and quality clothing lines…a store where you got your friends together to go with you and then lunch or coffee afterward to chat about the experience!… before they had the wonderful modern miracle of online shopping… Filene’s ~ we thank you! A store that will always be remembered in our hearts…

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