Speed Reads

Onto the Great Beyond

Bed Bath & Beyond files for bankruptcy

It's the end of the line for one of America's most iconic retailers. 

Bed Bath & Beyond announced Sunday that it was filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and would begin the process of closing its 360 remaining stores. The company's website displayed a banner saying that it had "made the difficult decision to begin winding down operations." 

While Bed Bath & Beyond locations will remain open during this process, along with its 120 locations of infant clothier Buy Buy Baby, storewide sales are slated to begin this coming Wednesday as the company begins liquidating its inventory. 

In a press release, Bed Bath & Beyond President & CEO Sue Gove said she deeply appreciates "our associates, customers, partners, and the communities we serve, and we remain steadfastly determined to serve them throughout this process. We will continue working diligently to maximize value for the benefit of all stakeholders." Grove added that the company intends to continue paying employee wages and benefits throughout the bankruptcy proceedings. 

Bed Bath & Beyond's Chapter 11 filing marks a historic ending for a 52-year-old company that helped defined the 1990s and 2000s retail landscape. The brand was considered one of the tentpoles of the retail "category killers," CNN noted — companies like Toys "R" Us, Circuit City, and Sports Authority that held near-monopolies over their product categories. All three of these chains also eventually went bankrupt, though, as mass-market retailers were unable to keep up with the online shopping boom from sites like Amazon. 

The brand has been teetering on the edge for a while, with the recent economic downturn spelling out the last of its problems. By November 2022, the company held $4.4 billion in assets but $5.2 billion in debts, CNBC reported, and rumors that they would file for bankruptcy first began swirling this past January.