Brookstone Files Chapter 11 Petition, Closing Mall Stores

Brookstone was making a bid to reverse the fortunes of its mall-based stores, but the initiative has been cut short by a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in a Delaware federal court.

As discussed in HomeWorld Business magazine’s August 6 issue, the company debuted a new, more interactive Brookstone Makers Showcase store in the Garden City, NY, Roosevelt Field mall this spring. However, according to a Brookstone Holding Group announcement, declining mall traffic in the United States was behind its decision to shutter the remaining 101 stores it operates in those shopping center formats.

Brookstone stated that the company would continue to run its 35 airport-based stores in the U.S. as well as e-commerce and wholesale operations even as it seeks a buyer for them.

“Today we have taken several important steps to restructure the business and ensure that Brookstone will be well-positioned to succeed for years to come,” said Brookstone CEO Piau Phang Foo. “The decision to close our mall stores was difficult, but ultimately provides an opportunity to maintain our well-respected brand and award-winning products while operating with a smaller physical footprint. We thank all our mall store employees and managers who have contributed so much despite an extremely challenging retail environment at malls and our thousands of loyal customers whom we look forward to continuing to serve. Our airport, e-commerce and wholesale business divisions are operating successfully and should prove attractive to a buyer with the financial resources and vision to carry our company into the future.”

Brookstone has secured $30 million in post-petition financing to support operations during the sale and restructuring process through an agreement with Wells Fargo Bank, and Gordon Brothers Finance Co.

Brookstone Holding is an affiliate of the Sanpower Group, which has introduced the brand in its native China. An inquiry with Brookstone representatives about the disposition of Sanpower’s business under the banner in China was not answered by post time.