Fargo-Moorhead Christopher & Banks stores closing as part of chain's nationwide bankruptcy liquidation

The women's clothing retailer had been able to overcome the losses tied to closings during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Fargo and Moorhead mall-based stores have both announced that their going-out-of-business sales are underway.

Christopher & Banks stores around the nation are being closed as part of the company's bankruptcy and liquidation. Losses tied to the coronavirus pandemic proved too great for the women's clothing retailer to overcome. The Fargo Christopher & Banks store in the West Acres mall is pictured here as it looked in August 2020. (Helmut Schmidt / The Forum)

FARGO - The Fargo and Moorhead Christopher & Banks stores are closing as part of a nationwide decision to go into bankruptcy and liquidate its operations.

A note posted Friday afternoon, Jan 15, “To Our Valued Customers” on the Fargo West Acres Shopping Center store’s Facebook page announced the decision.

“We announced in December that we had concerns about our ability to continue as a business given the impact of COVID-19. Our entire company has put forth a herculean effort to fight through this. However, a once in a 100-year pandemic proved to be an impossible event to overcome. As such, unfortunately, the company is experiencing liquidity constraints, and as a result, we must immediately start winding down our operations.,” the note said.

“As you may have already heard in media reports, Christopher & Banks is closing all brick and mortar locations. This decision wasn’t made lightly, but is the best course of action given the circumstance. Our website remains open and is available to you 24 hours a day.⁠

“As all of our stores wind down, our team members will continue to deliver the same amazing value and experience to our guests,” the note said.


A question and answer page with information on how the company will take payment, what to do with gift cards, and other issues, is available online at .

“On behalf of the Christopher & Banks family, we would like to express our deepest gratitude for your valued business over so many years. The past 65 years of operation simply wouldn’t have been possible without you,” the note concluded.


The Moorhead Center Mall's Christopher & Banks Facebook page posted a shorter message on Saturday, Jan. 16, thanking customers and adding, “We are starting the liquidation and wind-down process. Stop in and say GOOD LUCK.”
"Christopher & Banks/CJ Banks brand as a whole was substantially impacted over the past year due to the pandemic, and their business was not able to make it through. They were a great brand for West Acres, but will be closing their doors nationwide as part of their bankruptcy," Niki DiConcini, director of marketing and events for West Acres, said an email reply to The Forum.

"Retail has not been immune to the effects of the pandemic. Although we anticipate more store changes in the coming year, we have maintained strong interest from some long-requested retailers, and are confident that West Acres has a bright future beyond this time of adaptation and change.," DiConcini wrote. "In addition to Athleta opening next month and Sephora sometime this fall, we look forward to continuing to announce new stores in the coming months.."

Last week, West Acres mall announced that the Talbots store near the mall’s main entry was closing its local operation and in its place would be a standalone Sephora store .

Sephora currently maintains a store-within-a-store presence in the West Acres JCPenney store.

Christopher & Banks Corp. is a Minneapolis-based company that specializes in women’s apparel and accessories. It was founded in 1956 when Gil Braun opened his first Braun’s store in Minneapolis. Brauns Fashions became publicly traded in 1992 and rebranded to Christopher & Banks Corp. in 2000.


According to the company's website, it has nearly 450 stores in the U.S., primarily in smaller markets with populations less than 75,000.

The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday, Jan. 14, after protracted declines in sales. It defaulted on major financial obligations earlier in January, Retail Dive reported.

The company plans to sell its e-commerce unit in Chapter 11 and is in "active discussion with potential buyers," Retail Dive reported

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