This year is already on track to be a big one for store closings.
Based on figures from global marketing research firm Coresight Research, bankruptcy filings and company earnings reports, more than 7,000 stores are already slated to be shuttered.
Payless ShoeSource accounts for the largest number of closings with 2,590 stores, which are holding liquidation sales. Some stores closed in March and the company said others would close in May. Some locations are staying open a little longer than expected and closing in June.
In 2018, Coresight tracked 5,528 closings, which included all Toys R Us locations, plus hundreds of Mattress Firm stores, Kmart and Sears locations, and Brookstone’s remaining mall stores.
Coresight said 2017 marked the record year for closings with 8,139 shuttered stores. This included an earlier round of Payless closings, the entire HHGregg electronics and appliance chain, and hundreds of Sears and Kmart stores.
The first quarter of the year is historically the busiest for closings announcements, said Drew Myers, senior consultant with real-estate data firm CoStar Group, which looks at the size of stores when analyzing closings.
Square footage is a “really good gauge on the health of the retail market from a real estate standpoint,” Myers said. When square footage is taken into account, 2018 marks the top year for closings, with 155 million square feet of affected retail space.
“When you think about 2018, about 75% of that square footage announced for closures comes from Sears, Kmart, Toys R Us and Bon Ton,” he said.
Nine weeks into this year, 30 million square feet in closings has already been announced, CoStar’s data shows, a far cry from 2018. The difference in this year’s closings so far is fewer big box stores and more smaller chains affected, Myers said.
“These are retailers that may certainly lead us to a higher number of closings overall,” he said, “but in terms of the square footage of the retail market they may not move the needle that much.”
Some of the announced closures may carryover into 2020, which was the case with several closings announced in late 2018 such as Lowe’s, Sears and Kmart. Gap Inc. announced Feb. 28 it would close roughly 230 stores over two years.
Payless ShoeSource: 2,589 (includes 248 Canada locations and 114 smaller-format stores in Shopko Hometown locations).
Gymboree/Crazy 8: 749
Charlotte Russe: 494
Things Remembered: 422
Ascena Retail: 400
Family Dollar: As many as 390 stores
Shopko: Originally 251 stores were scheduled to close, but on March 18 the company said it will close all of its remaining locations by June.
Gap: Roughly 230 in next two years
LifeWay Christian Resources: All 170 stores.
Foot Locker: 165; total includes closings outside of the U.S.
Fred’s: 263; 159 stores were announced in first round; 104 additional stores announced May 16.
Signet Jewelers: The parent company of Kay, Zales and Jared said it would close another 150 stores.
Tesla: Number of closings hasn’t been confirmed. Tesla initially said it was shifting sales online and would close locations but later reversed the decision.
Pier 1 Imports: Up to 145 stores
Destination Maternity: 117
Amazon pop-up stores: 87 (locations in stores like Kohl’s and Whole Foods)
Victoria’s Secret: 53
Vera Bradley: 50
Party City: 45
The Children’s Place: 40-45
Bed Bath & Beyond: 40
J.C. Penney: 27
Bath & Body Works: 24
Henri Bendel: All 23 stores
Southeastern Grocers: 22
E.L.F. Beauty: All 22 stores
Saks Off 5th: 20
Topshop: All 11 U.S. stores
Whole Foods: 1
Calvin Klein: 1
Pottery Barn: 1
Charlotte Russe: All stores closing and starting liquidation
Source: Coresight Research; staff research
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