Indianapolis-area store on teen-clothing retailer’s closure list

 Teen clothing retailer Rue21 is closing about one-third of its stores nationwide as it focuses more on its online business.

The privately held company is shutting down nearly 400 stores, leaving it more than 700 stores in 48 states. The retailer did not release an official closing list, but indicated individually which stores would be closing on the store locator on its website.

In the Indianapolis area, only the Brownsburg Station store at 600 W. Northfield Dr. is marked for closure.

Rue21 operates eight other stores in the Indianapolis area—at Castleton Square, Southern Plaza, Centre West, Hamilton Town Center, Greenfield Crossing, Speedway Super Center, Plainfield Commons and Greenwood Park Mall.

Elsewhere in central Indiana, stores in Columbus, Bloomington and Marion also will close, according to the website. The chain has 37 stores in the state. Locations in Valparaiso, South Bend, Fort Wayne, and Corydon also are marked for closure.

The company is based in Cranberry, north of Pittsburgh. In a Facebook post, it called the decision to close the stores "difficult but necessary." Like many brick-and-mortar retailers, it has been battling declining mall traffic amid strong competition online.

The company didn't say how soon the stores will close, though its website is promoting store-closing sales.

Bloomberg News reported April 6 that Rue21 was preparing for bankruptcy. It has a forbearance agreement in place that lasts through late April as it negotiates with lenders.

Private equity firm Apax Partners bought the company for about $1 billion in 2013. It sells young men’s and women’s clothing, makeup and accessories, including the Ruebleu swimwear line.

In October, Rue21 elevated Chief Financial Officer Keith McDonough to the role of interim CEO, replacing Bob Fisch. At the time, the company said it was pursuing more e-commerce sales and customer-relationship management to help fuel growth.

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