Reitmans to close Thyme Maternity and Addition Elle

The company plans to permanently shutter 131 stores as it looks to optimize its retail footprint following creditor protection.
ADDITION ELLE-ADDITION ELLE- Canadian size-inclusive brand- anno

Tumultuous times continue for Reitmans, as it will permanently close its Thyme Maternity and Addition Elle brands this summer.

After filing for creditor protection two weeks ago, the company announced on Monday that it will liquidate its inventory for the two brands in anticipation of their respective closures. Thyme Maternity, and its 54 locations, will permanently close on July 18. Addition Elle, and its 77 retail stores, will close on Aug. 15.

“The strategic decision to close two beloved Canadian fashion brands was not made lightly, but it is necessary to enable our business to move forward as a profitable organization,” Stephen Reitman, president and CEO of Reitmans, said in a release.

Reitman added that although efforts were made to salvage the Thyme Maternity and Addition Elle brands, “we can no longer afford the required resources to bring them back to profitability.” The company will now focus its efforts on the Reitmans, Penningtons and RW & CO. brands, through both its e-commerce and brick and mortar channels across the country. Both Penningtons and Addition Elle serve plus-size consumers, with Addition Elle being slightly more up-market.

All physical stores of Reitmans, including Addition Elle and Thyme Maternity, will continue to re-open “in the coming days and weeks,” as per governmental guidelines. Addition Elle and Thyme Maternity stores will remain operational until their respective summer closure dates, whereby both of their e-commerce websites will also shut down.

As a result of these closures, and as part of the company’s overall restructuring plan, Reitmans will be reducing its retail staff by roughly 1,100 employees, and cutting 300 head office jobs in Montreal. Monday’s developments come as the company vowed, among other things, to “optimize its retail footprint in Canada” to come through creditor protection stronger.

It has been a difficult year for Reitmans and the retail sector as a whole. Its total sales were down 5.8% for the 2020 fiscal year, prior to the impact of the pandemic shutdown – both Penningtons and Addition Elle were pointed to as particular areas of under-performance.

In the first quarter of this year, 60% of retail businesses reported their revenues were down by at least 20%, according to Statistics Canada.