Wet Seal LLC is exploring liquidation or a sale, according to news reports.
The Irvine-based women’s apparel retailer closed 338 underperforming locations and laid off 3,695 full- and part-time employees in January 2015, just before filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It emerged several months later, under the ownership of Philadelphia-based private equity firm Versa Capital Management LLC, with a pared-down lineup of 171 stores in 41 states.
Versa is “considering a number of options for the retailer,” including a “sale for either the retailer as a whole or just its online presence,” sources close to the matter told The Wall Street Journal. “The firm is also considering liquidating all of its stores and solely operating as an online retailer.”
Wet Seal updated its logo and moved from Foothill Ranch to Irvine last year, as it no longer needed the warehouse that was part of its former 200,000-square-foot building.
Inventory management was outsourced to a company in Riverside.
Melanie Cox in August 2015 was named chief executive, and Judd Tirnauer last year assumed the role of chief financial officer.