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HOUSTON – Francesca’s confirmed Monday that it will shutter about 140 stores by the close of January and is considering filing for bankruptcy.

According to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the apparel and accessories retailer is exploring such possibilities as slashing operating expenses, raising capital, refinancing debt or negotiating reduced lease expenses to stabilize its finances.

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“If the Company is unable to raise sufficient additional capital to continue to fund operations and pay its obligations, the Company will likely need to seek a restructuring under the protection of applicable bankruptcy laws,” the Monday filing with the SEC stated.

Francesca’s joins the growing list of retailers desperate to “improve liquidity and financial position” while navigating the fallout from the novel coronavirus pandemic via temporary store closures, drastically reduced foot traffic inside mall locations and the often cumbersome shift to online sales, CNBC reported.

From J.C. Penney and Neiman Marcus to Brooks Brothers and Stein Mart, high-profile retailers nationwide have struggled to find more sound financial footing, but myriad challenges have compounded those efforts.

Although Penney’s found a buyer that allows it to keep stores open and save roughly 60,000 imperiled jobs, Stein Mart was forced to liquidate its stores and shutter operations entirely, CNBC reported.

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Francesca’s to close 140 stores nationwide, may file for bankruptcy

Francesca’s confirmed Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, that it will shutter about 140 stores by the close of January and is considering filing for bankruptcy.