The quiet before the storm has passed. This week, retailers announced closures of over 2,100 stores:
- Zara owner Inditex said it will close 1,000-1,200 stores worldwide over two years and focus on digital growth. The fast-fashion giant’s sales are down 44% from last year. The company currently operates over 7,400 stores and says it will reassign employees to avoid layoffs.
- The Children’s Place is closing 300 of its 920 stores in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico.
- Signet Jewelers, which owns Kay Jewelers, Zales, Jared, and H. Samuel, will close 380 stores before the end of the year.
- All 89 G.H. Bass and 110 Wilsons Leather stores will be closing.
- Tuesday Morning will close 230 of its 700 stores and recently filed for bankruptcy.
- Guess will close 100 stores in the U.S. and China.
Expect more shutterings to come. About 20,000 more: Coresight Research now predicts that 25,000 U.S. stores will close this year, disproportionately affecting malls, leading to a subsequent wave of mall closures. To put these figures in context, roughly 8,000-9,300 stores closed in the U.S. in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
Even before the coronavirus pandemic led to the closure of physical retail locations throughout the country, a number of brands had announced closure plans, including Forever 21, Pier 1, Papyrus, A.C. Moore, Macy’s, and Sears. The lockdowns have accelerated difficulties for mall operators that rely on foot traffic. These were followed by announcements of store closings by retailers including L Brands, which is shuttering 238 U.S. Victoria’s Secret stores, and J.C. Penney, which is closing a third of its 846 stores and filing for bankruptcy. Business Insider is keeping a comprehensive list of 2020 store closures here.