The Warrendale, Pennsylvania-based teen retailer, rue21, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy for a 3rd time on Thursday, May 2. It will close its remaining 540 stores and sell its intellectual property. 

The apparel company had been struggling for years. Previously, they filed for bankruptcy in 2003 and 2017.

Documents filed in Delaware bankruptcy court state that rue21 attempted to sell its business, but no potential buyer would pay as much as the company would earn by liquidating its assets. This includes "going out of business" sales and closing stores. 

Repercussions from the shift in online shopping during the COVID-19 pandemic led to the company getting a $25 million investment from existing lenders to keep up with the changes in the market, those lenders now own 80% of rue21 stock, according to the court filings.  

Currently, rue21 has about 4,900 employees and $194.4 million in debt. 

rue21 has several locations in Ohio, including 3 local stores: 

  • Eastwood Mall, Niles, OH 
  • Southern Park Mall, Boardman, OH
  • Premium Outlets, Grove City, PA 

According to the Eastwood Mall website, rue21 is having a "going out of business" this weekend from May 3-May 5, 2024. 

Joe Bell, Eastwood Mall Director of Corporate Communications, said the news of the bankruptcy and subsequent closures came 'abruptly' this morning, and the mall doesn't have any word as of yet when the store's last day will be. Bell added, that they will 'wait and see' what directives come from the company and that they will work to fill that retail space after rue21 is gone.

21 News went to the rue21 website for more information, but the website has a message on the landing page that reads "our site is being updated
check back soon."