Jones New York closing all 37 stores in Canada

Photo Credit Mike Mozart Flickr
Photo Credit Mike Mozart Flickr

(TORONTO)  All 37 Jones New York stores in Canada are expected to close within weeks after the corporate owner of the brand filed for creditor protection.

About 300 full- and part-time employees will be affected.

The majority of the stores — 23 — are located in Ontario. They include two in Waterloo Region — one in the Sunrise Shopping Centre in Kitchener and another in the St. Jacobs Outlet Mall.

The numbered company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Grafton Fraser, which owns and operates Tip Top Tailors, George Richards Big and Tall, Mr. Big and Tall and Kingsport Big and Tall Clothier brands.

According to court documents, the company is facing a liquidity crisis as a result of lower-than-expected retail sales, delays in receiving inventory, higher inventory costs due to currency fluctuations and unexpected freight charges.

The company bought the tangible assets of the Jones New York women’s wear business in Canada and licensed the intellectual property from Authentic Brands Group (ABG) last summer.

At the time, Dave McGregor, president and chief executive officer of Grafton Fraser Inc., said he felt he could revive the brand in Canada after all the U.S. stores were closed. He believed he could grow Jones New York for women to 110 stores, beginning in Alberta, where there was only one location.

He could not be reached for comment Thursday.

According to an affidavit filed to support the claim, ABG was unable to supply products on time and as a result the numbered Canadian company that bought Jones New York had to seek other suppliers at higher costs than initially contemplated and incurred higher freight costs to get the wares into stores on time.

Company assets were listed at $15.749 million and liabilities at $71.987 million.

An attempt to sell the company resulted in two liquidation offers, one of which has been accepted and commenced no later than June 14.

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