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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Mall owner Washington Prime Group has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, saying the "COVID-19 pandemic proved insurmountable."

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Aja Whitaker-Moore: Malls have been on the decline for years due to consumer demand shifting online. The pandemic has accelerated the trend for some operators grappling with disappearing foot traffic from shutdowns, and struggling tenants who've stopped paying rent or filed for bankruptcy themselves.

The big picture Washington Prime Group operates 102 malls across the U.S.

  • The company said in a statement late Sunday that a fresh $100 million loan will keep its malls operating during bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Washington Prime Group is the third major U.S. mall owner to file for bankruptcy during the pandemic after Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust and CBL.

Go deeper

Jun 14, 2021 - Health

It pays to bankrupt a drug manufacturer

Mallinckrodt CEO Mark Trudeau. Photo: Chris Goodney/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Last year, drug company Mallinckrodt paid its top five executives nearly $33 million, including $15 million to CEO Mark Trudeau.

Why it matters: Last year, Mallinckrodt filed for bankruptcy, faced numerous opioid lawsuits, and shelled out $640 million in underpaid rebates to the federal government — all problems that have come under the watch of executives receiving these lavish pay packages.

Virginia energy giant quietly boosts McAuliffe

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe speaks during a campaign rally on Oct. 15 in Henrico, Virginia. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Virginia Democrat Terry McAuliffe has sworn off money from the Richmond company Dominion Energy. But the utility has found more subtle ways to back McAuliffe's gubernatorial bid, records show.

Driving the news: Dominion's political action committee has donated $200,000 to a murky political group called Accountability Virginia PAC, which has been running ads attacking Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin.

2 hours ago - Technology

Race and technology in America

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The technology industry is famously determined to change the world — but its efforts to diversify its workforce and remove bias from its products haven't changed nearly enough.