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Charming Charlie Makes a Comeback With First Store Since Liquidations

Charming Charlie has unveiled its first store since liquidating in bankruptcy last year.

The women’s apparel and accessories company announced this week that it has swung open the doors to a new location at the Cumberland Mall in Atlanta. The outpost — where clothing, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics and more items are grouped by color, as in past Charming Charlie units — officially welcomed in the public on Friday.

“We’re back solely because of our fans, and we’re exceptionally proud to be reopening at one of Charming Charlie’s original locations at the Cumberland Mall,” president Steve Lovell said in a statement. “With the opening of this new store, it’s important for us to express that our first priority is ensuring the health and safety of our associates and customers as we reopen. It’s at the heart of every decision we make.”

According to a press release, Charming Charlie plans to roll out additional stores in markets across the United States starting late this year through early 2021, as its originally scheduled plan to open in March was delayed by the COVID-19 health crisis.

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It noted on its website that it expects to open as many as 25 stores a year. The next Charming Charlie opening is slated for Oct. 2 at Towson Town Center in Towson, Md.

Charming Charlie Holdings Inc. filed for bankruptcy in July, when it revealed plans to shut down its entire fleet of 261 locations across the country as well as halt online sales. In court documents, the retailer wrote that it had faced “significant headwinds, given the continued decline of the brick-and-mortar retail industry.”

That marked the company’s second bankruptcy filing in just two years: The Houston-based chain first filed for Chapter 11 protection in December 2017 at the height of digital disruption and the so-called retail apocalypse. Although it made its exit the following April, Charming Charlie’s go-forward plan, including the closures of 100 outposts, wasn’t enough to keep challenges at bay.

Last September, the business’ intellectual property sold for $1.125 million in an auction, according to documents filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the District of Delaware. Founder Charlie Chanaratsopon’s real estate investment firm, CJS Group LP, emerged as the winning bidder, and he promised to resurrect the struggling retailer.

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