Global footwear chain Payless ShoeSource has officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, as it submits to increasing competition from online competitors like Zappos and Amazon, AP reports.
The Kansas-based retailer announced Tuesday that it will be immediately closing close 400 of its stores. Payless was founded in 1956 and currently has over 4,400 stores in over 30 countries. In an effort to reduce its growing debt by almost 50%, reduce its payments interest, the company said some of its lenders have agreed to make available up to $385 million to keep the stores operating. “This is a difficult, but necessary, decision driven by the continued challenges of the retail environment,” Payless CEO Paul Jones said.