Saxon Shoes Files for Bankruptcy

Saxon Shoes Inc. has gone bankrupt.

The Henrico, Va.-based footwear retailer filed for Chapter 11 protection in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on Friday. It put its estimated assets in the range of $1 million to $10 million, the same as its liabilities, and has between 200 and 999 creditors.

Among the company’s largest creditors in the shoe industry are Merrell and Sperry parent Wolverine World Wide Inc., to which it owes $72,000; New Balance, at upwards of $46,500; The Rockport Company, at $34,800; and Journeys owner Genesco Inc., for whom it has an unsecured claim of more than $20,400. It also owes $16,200 to Birkenstock USA LP, plus $18,100 to Ugg and Hoka One One parent Deckers Outdoor Corp.

The family-owned and -operated chain currently has two stores — one in Short Pump Town Center in western Henrico County and another in The Village at Spotsylvania Towne Centre in Fredericksburg.

Speaking with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, president and CEO Gary Weiner, who is the son of Saxon Shoes’ founders, said, “We have worked as hard as possible to build this business. We plan to exit bankruptcy as a strong and more viable business. We hope to be selling shoes for years to come.”

FN has reached out to Weiner for comment.

Saxon Shoes first opened its doors on Grace Street in Virginia’s capital back in 1953. Over the decades, it became recognized as one of the largest full-service footwear stores in the region.

However, lockdown restrictions stemming from the coronavirus pandemic forced the closures of both of its locations starting mid-March. In an interview with the Times-Dispatch, Weiner said revenues declined in the first three or four weeks by roughly 97% compared with the prior year period. Although its outposts reopened in May, he reportedly said that sales were still down more than 50% from a year ago.

The fashion and footwear sectors have been at the center of 2020’s bankruptcy wave, with overall filings in the United States on track to hit a 10-year high as the COVID-19 outbreak rages on. Major nationwide chains like J.Crew, Neiman Marcus and JCPenney have already sought Chapter 11 protection, while retailers like Stein Mart and New York and Company have opted to shut down a significant portion, if not the entirety, of their brick-and-mortar fleets.

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