RIP Henri Bendel

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L Brands, the parent company of Henri Bendel, just announced that after 123 years, the company will be closing in January of 2019. Due to declining sales, L Brands plans to shut down all 23 Henri Bendel brick and mortar stores, including the iconic New York City Fifth Avenue flagship store, and its e-commerce business.

“We are committed to improving performance in the business and increasing shareholder value. As part of that effort, we have decided to stop operating Bendel to improve company profitability and focus on our larger brands that have greater growth potential. This decision is right for the future growth of our company, but not easy because of the impact to our L Brands family. I want to thank our Bendel associates for their dedication to this iconic brand and to our loyal Bendel customers.”, said Leslie Wexner, chairman and chief executive officer of L Brands.

Henri Bendel has been a major pioneer in the fashion industry. Bendel was the first retailer to brand himself, the first luxury retailer with an upper Fifth Avenue location, the first to hold a semi-annual sale, the first to offer in-store makeovers, and the first to hold a fashion show. If that’s not impressive - Henri Bendel is also responsible for bringing Coco Chanel to the United States and discovering Andy Warhol.

I’m personally extremely sad to see Henri Bendel go because I really love their aesthetic, but I’m gonna love this going out of business sale even more!

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