The Limited Stores may be the next retailer to go belly up.
People familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal that the womenswear retailer has hired financial advisers Guggenheim Partners to explore a potential sale.
“Limited Stores is exploring a number of options that would provide the company with greater financial flexibility,” a company representative told the Journal.
The retailer, specializing in contemporary casual and work apparel for women, was founded in 1963 and now has 243 stores. The Limited went public in the 1980s before coming under the wing of L Brands, which owns Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works.
L Brands sold 75 percent of its stake in The Limited to the retailer’s current owner, Sun Capital Partners in 2007 for $50 million in equity and $75 million, according to the Journal. L Brands sold the remaining 25 percent of its stake to Sun Capital in 2010 for around $32 million.
Sun Capital has declined to comment on the news, but the retailer has reportedly been struggling, as many retailers, with falling mall traffic and greater headwinds in the retail sector.
Those close to the matter told the Journal that potential buyers, including retail competitors and financial firms, are hovering but the company’s assessment of its business could still result in a restructuring rather than a sale.
Earlier this year, The Limited was looking to expand, foraying into off-price retail and launching its value-driven Backroom at the Limited format in May, with plans to open more off-price stores throughout the year.