March 19 (UPI) -- Fashion accessory retailer Claire's announced Monday it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
The company, a fixture in shopping malls, primarily sells jewelry and accessories aimed at young women and teenage girls. News of the Claire's bankruptcy is the latest in a series of retail bankruptcies.
The filing by Claire's follows other recent financial reorganizations for companies like Gymboree, Sports Authority and Toys 'R' Us.
The company, which operates 7,500 stores under the Claire's and Icing brands, said it's decided on financial restructuring instead of liquidation, like Toys 'R' Us has done. It added that it has an agreement with first-lien creditors to provide $575 million in new capital.
The Chapter 11 process is expected to end in September, when about $1.9 billion in debt is anticipated to be eliminated, the company said in a statement Monday.
The restructuring plan only affects Claire's stores in the United States.
Once a publicly traded company, Claire's went private in 2007 in a $3.1 billion leveraged buyout and is controlled by private equity investment firm Apollo Global Management.