Brownwood’s rue21 location in Commerce Square is one of 400 stores nationwide that will be shuttering following an announcement from the company Monday morning.
The closings, which represent about one-third of the company’s retail spaces, come as rue21 faces rumors of imminent bankruptcy. Rue21, primarily a teenage clothing brand, will become the latest in a spate of recent Brownwood-area closings including JCPenney, Payless Shoe Source and Sprint.
The rue21 website contains a complete list of all closing stores, including the Commerce Square location. The location’s webpage contains a terse message, reading, “It’s true — we are closing this store. It was a difficult but necessary decision. Stop by and check out the deals before it’s too late. But the good news is we still have hundreds of locations across the country, and our website rue21.com, open for business!”
Though the Brownwood storefront is already filled with closing signs and deal promotions, the store manager was unable to comment on how long the location will remain open. A rue21 customer service representative said store closing dates may vary based on how long it takes to sell the remaining inventory.
Responding to a Bulletin Facebook post about the cause of the recent uptick in store closings, local residents cited everything from insufficient community support to poor store locations to bad customer service.