This year has been another difficult one for traditional retailers. Nearly 5,000 stores shut their doors in 2018, and 2019 has already surpassed that number. In fact, one industry watchdog predicts that it’s possible 12,000 stores will have closed before we ring in 2020.
Retail closings: The latest news
The latest announcement comes from gaming retailer GameStop, which says its strategic plan for the future includes shuttering somewhere around 200 of its locations by year’s end.
GameStop says it will close nearly 200 stores
GameStop will close between 180 and 200 stores around the world by the end of this year, the retailer said in a recent earnings call, according to news reports.
In a news release, GameStop said that its business has been hurt by a brutal second quarter in which global sales decreased 14.3%.
“While we experienced sales declines across a number of our categories during the quarter, these trends are consistent with what we have historically observed towards the end of a hardware cycle,” GameStop Chief Financial Officer Jim Bell said. “We will continue to manage the underlying businesses to produce meaningful cash returns, while maintaining a strong balance sheet and investing responsibly in our strategic initiatives.”
As of yet, the retailer has not divulged a specific list of locations that will close.
Fred’s – All remaining stores to close
Discount store and pharmacy Fred’s announced this week that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will close all its stores.
The news comes after the company closed several stores earlier this year.
In a news release, the company said it has “commenced liquidation sales at all retail locations, which are expected to close over the next 60 days.”
For the time being, customers can still get their prescriptions fulfilled at most pharmacy locations, the retailer said.
The Avenue – 222 stores are closing
Women’s plus-size clothing retailer Avenue is closing 222 stores and going out of business, according to Hilco Merchant Resources, which is facilitating the liquidation process along with investment firm Gordon Brothers.
For customers, Avenue’s demise means immediate steep discounts in all its stores. The retailer has began price reductions at 30 to 50% off. “All items, brands and even in-store fixtures are being sold,” the retailer said in a press release.
Avenue has stores in 33 states. See the full list of stores here.
Party City – 55 stores to close
Party City says it will close 55 stores this year, increasing by 10 the number of locations it has marked for closure.
The retailer announced in May 2019 that it would close 45 underperforming stores by year’s end.
In disclosing the company’s second quarter financial results, Party City CEO James Harrison said recently, “We continued to experience headwinds from direct and indirect impacts of the helium shortages and higher helium costs in many of our markets.”
He added that Party City had secured additional helium, but “results were negatively impacted by the flow through of temporarily higher freight costs incurred in late 2018 and non-recurring inventory markdown costs associated with planned store closures.”
The company hasn’t yet released the full list of store closures, but these are the ones that have been confirmed so far, according to Business Insider:
- 19037 Golden Valley Road, Santa Clarita, California
- 300 S. Highland Springs Ave., Banning, California
- 3629 W. Florida Ave., Hemet, California
- 533 S. Broad St., Meridien, Connecticut
- 2350 Sycamore Road, DeKalb, Illinois
- 1020 N. Stratford Road, Moses Lake, Washington
Sears & Kmart – 26 more stores to close
Sears Holdings has announced that it will close 26 large-format Sears and Kmart stores in late October. After closing scores of stores earlier this year and emerging from bankruptcy, the company has focused on slimming itself in what it calls a “weak retail environment.”
Although the company notes it plans to add several smaller Home & Life stores, Sears Holdings says that it “cannot rule out” additional closures “in the near term.”
All Sears Auto Centers at the affected locations will close in late August, the company says.
Here are the Sears and Kmart store closings set for October 2019:
- Kmart 1625 W Redlands Redlands CA
- Kmart 14011 Palm Drive Desert Hot Springs CA
- Kmart 159 Wilbraham Road Palmer MA
- Kmart 975 Fairmount Avenue Jamestown NY
- Kmart Puerto Rico Hwy 3 Plaza Guayama Guayama PR
- Sears 2500 Riverchase Galleria Birmingham AL
- Sears Somersville Road Antioch CA
- Sears 8501 W Bowles Avenue Littleton CO
- Sears 6200 20Th Street Vero Beach FL
- Sears 901 Us 27 N Sebring FL
- Sears 3700 Atlanta Hwy Ste 270 Athens GA
- Sears 5 Stratford Square Bloomingdale IL
- Sears 2300 Southlake Mall Merrillville IN
- Sears 6501 Grape Rd Us 23 Mishawaka IN
- Sears 6901 Security Sq Blvd Baltimore MD
- Sears 6780 S Westnedge Avenue Portage MI
- Sears 4900 Fashion Square Mall Saginaw MI
- Sears 18777 E 39Th St S Independence MO
- Sears 3 Mid Rivers Mall Drive St Peters MO
- Sears 330 Siemers Drive Cpe Girardeau MO
- Sears 600 Richland Mall Mansfield OH
- Sears 1101 Melbourne Rd Hurst TX
- Sears 10000 Emmett F Lowry Expy Texas City TX
- Sears 4812 Valley View Blvd Ne Roanoke VA
- Sears 4700 N Division Street Spokane WA
- Sears 100 Huntington Mall Road Barboursville WV
Walgreens – 200 stores to close
Walgreens has revealed in a security filing that it will close 200 stores across the United States.
The company says that it made the decision “following a review of the real estate footprint in the United States.” Walgreens says the move is part of a “transformational cost management program” that it announced in December 2018.
Walgreens hasn’t yet said which stores will be affected.
GNC – Up to 900 stores to close
In a recent investor call, GNC said that they plan to “optimize” the number of stores they have by 25% in the United States and Canada. That works out to closing between 700-900 stores, according to an investor presentation the company shared with stakeholders.
The changes are part of GNC’s effort to reposition itself from being a specialty retailer to a global brand that promotes overall wellness and health. Part of that strategy involves shifting the focus from physical stores to an online “omnichannel” experience.
Customers can expect the dwindling of locations to take place over the next two to three years, the retailer said.
Charming Charlie – 260 stores to close
After its second bankruptcy in 24 months, Charming Charlie announced recently that it is closing the remainder of its 260 stores, along with a distribution center and its corporate offices.
In a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, Charming Charlie says the locations are “expected to close on or before August 31, 2019.”
The retailer’s website is still up and advertising an “everything must go” sale, but is unable to take any orders.
Francesca’s – At least 30 stores to close
The second half of 2019 is going to be one of downsizing for Francesca’s, according to company brass.
The retailer’s Chief Financial Officer Kelly Dilts told analysts on June 13 that “at least” 30 store locations are going away later this year, according to RetailDive.com.
Francesca’s began with a store in Houston, Texas, in 1996. Since then, the company has built more than 700 boutiques across the United States.
In an investor’s report on its website, Francesca’s brass disclosed that net sales decreased 13% in the first quarter of the year.
Dressbarn – 650 stores to close
Dressbarn’s parent company, Ascena, announced May 21 that it is closing all of the women’s clothing store’s locations to concentrate on more profitable entities in its business portfolio.
The demise of Dressbarn means the shuttering of around 650 stores, according to CNBC.com. Ascena recently sold off its Maurices brand, as well.
In a statement, the company said that the decision to close Dressbarn “has no impact on the operations of any of Ascena’s other brands.” Ascena also owns the Ann Taylor and Loft stores.
No further timeline has been announced as of yet for the wind-down of the Dressbarn business.
CVS – 46 locations to close
CVS Health, better known as CVS Pharmacy, recently announced plans to close 46 underperforming retail pharmacy stores by July 2019. This news comes after the company shared plans to commit more physical space to its health and wellness initiatives, mostly due to its acquisition of Aetna.
- Huntsville: 3115 Bob Wallace Ave SW
- Montgomery: 664 Schillinger Rd S
- Montgomery: 2815 Low Wetumpka Rd
- Phoenix: 7434 W Indian School Rd
- Antioch: 3130 Buchanan Rd
- San Francisco: 1285 A Sutter St
- San Francisco: 995 Market St
- Sun Valley: 9375 San Fernando Rd
District of Columbia
- Washington, DC: 1201 Maryland Ave SW
- Wilmington: 402 N Maryland Ave
- Daytona Beach: 1350 Beville Rd
- North Fort Myers: 13991 N Cleveland Ave
- Ocala: 1607 S Pine Ave
- Palm Beach Gardens: 3168 Northlake Blvd
- Honolulu: 1441 Kapiolani Blvd. Suite 510
- Honolulu: 1401 S Beretania St. Suite 110
- Chicago: 745 W 103rd St
- Chicago: 175 W Jackson Blvd
- Chicago: 1620 W 59th St
- Chicago: 1550 N Kostner Ave
- Lincolnwood: 7179 N Lincoln Ave
- North Aurora: 1015 W. Orchard Rd.
- South Barrington: 100 W Higgins Rd
- Greenwood Lake: 123 Windermere Ave
- Staten Island: 812 Forest Ave
- Detroit: 10301 Woodward Ave.
- Brooklyn Park: 7996 Brooklyn Blvd.
- Minneapolis: 1110 Hennepin Ave.
- Minneapolis: 2426 W. Broadway Ave.
- Springfield: 1735 South Glenstone Ave.
- Albuquerque: 7105 Central Ave. NE
- Brownsville: 1454 Central Blvd.
- Copperas Cove: 1407 E W Hwy 190
- El Paso: 2525 N. Mesa St.
- Katy: 3080 S Fry Rd
- Newport: 4730 US Route 5
- Rio Grande City: 5322 E. US Highway 83
- San Antonio: 7031 Marbach Rd.
- Spring: 6945 Cypresswood Dr
Bed Bath & Beyond – 40+ locations to close
Bed Bath & Beyond says it will shutter “a minimum of approximately 40 stores” this year because of the high cost of commercial real estate.
“This number will grow unless we are able to negotiate more favorable lease terms with our landlords,” Chief Financial Officer Robyn D’Elia revealed during a recent earnings call.
At the same time, D’Elia says Bed Bath & Beyond is planning to open 15 new stores in 2019.
Shopko Stores – All 370 locations to liquidate by June 16
After entering bankruptcy and announcing the closure of some 250 stores in February, Shopko failed to find an investor to help restructure and get out from underneath an estimated $10 billion in debt.
So, in mid-March, the Midwestern chain made the difficult decision to shutter all of its 370 stores; that process is expected to take place over the next three months. The closures will wind down by June 16, according to the Green Bay Press Gazette.
“This is not the outcome that we had hoped for when we started our restructuring efforts,” CEO Russ Steinhorst said in a press release. “We want to thank all of our teammates for their hard work and dedication during their time at Shopko.”
Charlotte Russe – All 500+ stores in 49 states closing
After initially announcing it would shed just a fifth of its stores in February, Charlotte Russe has now abruptly announced it will shut down all operations after failing to finding a suitable way out of bankruptcy.
Liquidation sales will begin immediately and all sales are final.
As is always the case when a retailer goes out of business, you’re now racing against the clock to use up any gift cards you may have sitting around. Charlotte Russe stores will accept gift cards through March 21. After that, they’ll be worthless!
Amazon – Closing all 87 pop-up locations
The e-commerce giant has announced it’s closing all of its U.S. pop-up shops that were mainly used to demo and sell smart speakers, tablets, and Kindles to customers in malls.
The closures are likely to come by April 29, according to the Wall Street Journal.
While these closures are imminent, Amazon is far from exiting the brick-and-mortar retail game.
In fact, the Seattle-based company also said it plans to expand its bookstores and so-called “four star” stores that feature merchandise identified as customer faves online.
Plus, Amazon is said to be studying what it learned after buying Whole Foods with an eye toward opening dozens of grocery stores across the U.S. These stores would feature lower price points and more inventory than the organic supermarket.
And that’s not to mention the ongoing rollout of its cashierless Amazon Go convenience stores!
Dollar Tree – Closing or rebranding some 600 Family Dollar locations
After buying Family Dollar four years ago, Dollar Tree says it will revamp the struggling banner by closing up to 390 Family Dollar stores this year. Additionally, the company expects some 200 other Family Dollars will be turned into Dollar Trees during 2019.
Meanwhile, other major changes are also underway at Dollar Tree. The store may give into pressure from activist investors and try additional price points like $1.50 or $2 in an effort to remain profitable, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“Testing new initiatives is an essential component of the Company’s ability to evolve and provide the best customer experience, including multi-price point testing, which has been done on prior occasions,” the company said.
But don’t worry, it has no plans to abandon the $1 price point!
“The Dollar Tree banner has one of the most unique, differentiated and defensible brand concepts in all of value retail,” the company notes. “The one-dollar fixed-price point has been a critical element of Dollar Tree’s success, generating deep customer loyalty and strong historical performance.”
Abercrombie & Fitch – Up to 40 stores being shuttered
After closing 29 stores last year, Abercrombie & Fitch said during a March 6 earnings reveal that up to 40 stores will be shuttered this year.
While there’s no word yet exactly which locations will go dark, it’s likely to be a mix of the clothing retailer’s Abercrombie and Hollister locations, just as it was in 2018.
Victoria’s Secret – Closing 53 stores
The seller of women’s intimate apparel plans to ramp up store closures more in 2019 as it rejiggers its retail fleet to meet changing consumer expectations.
Next up on the chopping block are 53 additional stores, the locations of which have not yet been announced.
For perspective, Victoria’s Secret closed 30 stores in 2018, according to USA TODAY.
“We are closing more stores [than] we did in 2018 and expected [to] in 2019, based on the overall performance of the Victoria’s Secret business, not meeting our expectations or having year-on-year declines,” CFO Stuart Burgdoerfer said during a recent earnings call.
GAP – More than 230 stores to close over next two years
The fashion retailer is undergoing a major structural change that will see it sell off its Old Navy brand and shutter hundreds of its namesake stores over a 24-month period.
“There are approximately 150 closures that will take place as leases naturally expire over the next two years,” CFO Teri List-Stoll said during an earnings call.
“In that same timeframe, we also are actively pursuing more rapid closures of about 75 and up to maybe 100 stores that do not meet our criteria for retention. We expect the stores with the most significant losses will be closed by the end of fiscal year 2019.”
Tesla – Closing the bulk of its dealerships
Electric car company Tesla will be closing the bulk of its dealer showrooms in the coming months. The move underscores a wholesale change to its business model as it switches to online sales and rolls out the long-awaited $35,000 Tesla Model 3.
“Over the next few months, we will be winding down many of our stores, with a small number of stores in high-traffic locations remaining as galleries, showcases and Tesla information centers,” the company writes in a blog post. “The important thing for customers in the United States to understand is that, with online sales, anyone in any state can quickly and easily buy a Tesla.”
J.C. Penney – 27 more stores closing
J.C. Penney announced that it’s going to shutter more than two dozen additional locations by spring 2019 after going on a closing spree that saw 140 locations go dark in 2017.
The latest news is part of the company’s continuing effort to right-size its retail fleet as more and more customers shop online.
“The stores identified for closure either require significant capital, are minimally cash flow positive today relative to the Company’s overall consolidated average or represent a real estate monetization opportunity,” the company noted in its fourth-quarter earnings report.
The new closures will include 18 full-line stores and 9 ancillary home and furniture stores. Three of the store closures were announced previously in January.
Whole Foods – Converting all Whole Foods 365 stores to flagship banner
The organic grocer will change all of its cheaper retail outlets that operated under the Whole Foods 365 nameplate into traditional Whole Foods stores by the end of the year, according to Yahoo! Finance.
While upwards of 20,000 Whole Foods 365 stores were planned, only a dozen have been built across the country. The smaller store format put an emphasis on store brands goods, much like an Aldi or Lidl — only more expensive.
Going forward there will only be a single Whole Foods presence in the retail space.
Payless – 2,100 stores closing, liquidations underway
Discount shoe chain Payless is closing all 2,100 of its US locations (including those in Puerto Rico) in the coming months, a spokesman told CNN Business on Friday.
Stores will begin liquidation Sunday, February 17, and some locations will begin closing in March, with most staying open until May.
Payless has more than 18,000 employees across 3,600 locations in 40 countries. The company previously closed around 400 stores in 2017 after declaring Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Performance Bicycle – 100+ stores closing
Performance Bicycle is expected to close its doors for good on March 2 now that its parent company, Philadelphia-based Advanced Sport Enterprises, has entered into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Liquidation sales are currently underway at all 104 locations, according to the retailer’s website.
As the #1 specialty bicycle retailer in the U.S., Performance Bicycle has attracted legions of weekend warriors across the country looking for bikes and gear to hit the trails and roadways since 1982.
Petland Discounts – 70+ stores closing
This regional pet store chain is reportedly shuttering all locations throughout New York, New Jersey and Connecticut after the company’s founder died in January.
At last count, Petland Discounts had more than 70 stores across the tri-state area. Though the company’s website is down, you can see a list of locations here.
H&M – Closing 160 stores
International apparel retailer H&M has announced it will pull the plug on 160 stores in the United States in 2019.
“[The U.S. is] probably the market that is going through the biggest change at the moment with too many shopping centers around…too many physical stores,” CEO Karl-Johan Persson told Wall Street analysts when announcing the anticipated closures.
Yet at the same time, Persson also says H&M is planning to open 335 stores worldwide this year. However, only less than a third will be in the company’s main markets of the U.S. and Europe.
Tuesday Morning – Two dozen stores may be shuttered
Tuesday Morning announced that it plans to close between 20 and 25 this year.
“Over the next 12 months approximately 25% of our store fleet comes up for renewal,” CEO Steven Becker revealed during a recent earnings call. “We will aggressively renegotiate our rents and we’ll close stores opportunistically should those negotiations not result in a reasonable outcome for Tuesday Morning.”
In addition, the home décor chain plans to relocate 12 to 15 stores, expand one location and open up to a dozen new shops in 2019.
Pat Catan’s – All stores closing, one-third to be re-opened as Michaels
Michaels, the crafts store retailer, has announced it’s going to shutter all 36 locations of Pat Catan’s Arts & Craft Stores because the sub-chain has “struggled in the face of industry headwinds,” according to a press release.
Fortunately, there is a bright side to this closure announcement. Twelve of the Pat Catan’s stores — located throughout Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and West Virginia — will be rebranded and reopened as Michaels stores later this year.
Gymboree – Filing for bankruptcy — again
Gymboree Group Inc. (GGI) has filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time in less than two years.
As part of that process, the children’s clothing retailer will shutter 800+ stores across two brands.
The closures will hit 540 Gymboree stores and outlets in the United States and Canada and 265 stores under the ‘Crazy 8’ brand across the U.S., according to Reuters.
Janie and Jack — a third brand in the GGI family — operates 139 stores. They will be sold off in asset purchase deal.
Chico’s – Right-sizing its retail fleet
The Fort Myers, Fla.-based retailer says it’s going to close at least 250 stores over the next three years as part of a retail fleet optimization plan.
The closures will come across Chico’s three brands, which also include White House Black Market and Soma.
No word yet on exactly which stores will be shuttered. The closings are expected to trickle in throughout 2019 and then ramp up aggressively in 2020 and 2021.
At last count, Chico’s operated 1,431 stores in the U.S. and Canada.
Clark’s key takeaway
If you happen to receive a gift card for any of the retailers on this list, money expert Clark Howard wants you to spend it right away in case your local store is on the chopping block.
“If you have any gift cards for major retailers, I want you to go and shop. I want you to use them up,” Clark said.