Express Inc owns the Bonobos and UpWest Express brands. All 12 of its UpWest stores are set to close along with 95 Express retail stores as part of the bankruptcy arrangement.

Express Inc said it has received a non-binding letter of intent from a consortium led by WHP Global including a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of Simon Property Group, L. P. and Brookfield Properties for the potential sale of a substantial majority of the company’s retail stores and operations.

The move to file for bankruptcy comes after reports surfaced Express Inc was considering debt restructuring and possible bankruptcy following dwindling sales and soaring losses. In its third quarter, Express Inc announced a net loss of $154.2m versus $39.3m a year earlier. Operating losses increased to $138.4m versus a loss of $28.2m a year earlier.

Net sales fell to $1.27bn from $1.35bn a year earlier while gross profit slid.

Express has received a commitment for $35m in new financing from certain of its existing lenders, subject to court approval.

The retailer will continue to serve customers in store and online “and expects to conduct business as usual as the company works to right-size its lease portfolio and operations.”

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“We continue to make meaningful progress refining our product assortments, driving demand, connecting with customers and strengthening our operations,” said chief executive officer Stewart Glendinning. “We are taking an important step that will strengthen our financial position and enable Express to continue advancing our business initiatives. WHP has been a strong partner to the company since 2023, and the proposed transaction will provide us additional financial resources, better position the business for profitable growth and maximise value for our stakeholders.

“Express has a strong portfolio of brands and a premier omnichannel platform. Our top priority remains providing our customers with the contemporary styles and value they expect from us. We thank our associates for their continued hard work and commitment, and we appreciate the ongoing support of our vendors, suppliers and business partners.”