Coronavirus leads to bankruptcy for Brooks Brothers, joining J. Crew & J.C. Penney

Brooks Brothers has filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The 202-year-old brand filed on Wednesday, becoming the latest victim of the coronavirus recession.

In an announcement the company said it would close 51 of its 250 stores in North America.

Brooks Brothers operates locations in the Rochester-area, Niagara Falls, Waterloo, and Syracuse-area.

On its website, the location in Waterloo, New York at Waterloo Premium Outlets is listed as permanently closed.

Brooks Brothers has been seeking a buyer, which has been highly-publicized, but few suitors appeared.

The company had secured $75 million in last-minute financing to continue operation during the sale process.

A number of retailers – such as J.C. Penney, J. Crew, and Neiman Marcus have entered into bankruptcy proceedings.

J.C. Penney had announced that its location in the Auburn-area at the Fingerlakes Mall would shut down this summer. Similarly, while no local J. Crew stores had announced closure – the company was identified as the first major retail casualty coming out of the pandemic-forced closure.

That closure added stress to the already-difficult economic climate for retailers, who saw brick-and-mortar success dwindling.

Brookers Brothers was founded in 1818.