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January 30, 2020

Bench to close all stores in Canada, shift focus online

Apparel retailer Bench is reportedly planning to close all 24 of its branches across Canada as it shifts its focus to its e-commerce operation.

By Hannah Abdulla

Apparel retailer Bench is reportedly planning to close all 24 of its branches across Canada as it shifts its focus to its e-commerce operation.

In a report by BNN Bloomberg, Bench Canada’s partner Freemark Apparel Brands Group said it is closing its brick-and-mortar stores to focus more on its e-commerce business as well as its key wholesale customers.

No details were provided as to how many staff would be impacted by the move or when the stores would close.

Launched in Manchester in 1989, Bench is one of the first streetwear fashion retailers and until very recently its products could be found in over 20 countries in Europe and North America. As recently as 2017, the brand had over 80 Bench branded stores in Europe and North America and an additional 2,000-plus wholesale points of sale. 

In 2018, Bench was acquired by liquidators Gordon Brown from administrators. Under the deal Freemark Apparel Brands Group, whose brands also include Esprit, would remain as a partner for the brand.

Freemark Apparel Brands did not return request for comment when approached by just-style.

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