Gymboree to file for bankruptcy protection as early as this week, could shutter majority of 900 stores

Key Points
  • Gymboree is expected to file for bankruptcy protection this week, a person familiar with the situation told CNBC
  • Gymboree trying to sell its its high-end Janie and Jack as part of the bankruptcy process.
  • Gymboree could close the rest of its roughly 900 stores.
Pedestrians walk past a Gymboree store in San Francisco, California.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Children's clothing retailer Gymboree Group is expected to file for bankruptcy protection as soon as this week, in what would be its second bankruptcy filing in less than two years, a person familiar with the situation told CNBC.

As part of the bankruptcy process, the company expects to close much of the roughly 900 stores it operates under the Gymboree, Janie and Jack and Crazy 8 brands, the person said. The retailer is also trying to sell its high-end brand, Janie and Jack, which could save the brand and its roughly 139-store footprint, the person said.

The person asked to be kept anonymous because the information is confidential.

Gymboree previously filed for bankruptcy in June 2017. At the time, it was dealing with more than $1 billion in debt left over from a leveraged buyout by Bain Capital Partners in 2010, and it operated more than 1,280 stores.

It was one of the rare retailers that year to head into bankruptcy and emerge with hopes to run its business again. In that bankruptcy, Gymboree closed about 375 stores and shed $900 million in debt from its balance sheet.

The Wall Street Journal first reported Gymboree's imminent bankruptcy plans. Gymboree wasn't immediately available to comment.

Gymboree Group no longer owns Gymboree Play & Music, which offers developmental play, music and art classes for parents and children up to age 5. That business was sold in July 2016.

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