This Beloved Brand Is Closing 122 Stores
The company revealed that its earnings had dipped significantly amid the COVID pandemic.
With fewer people shopping brick-and-mortar stores amid the pandemic, the retail industry is having a hard time rebounding. However, it's not just mom-and-pop shops that have had to shutter due to financial pressure brought about by the pandemic—a number of major chains have been forced to make tough decisions to stay afloat. Now, beloved children's retailer The Children's Place has announced plans to close 122 stores in 2021 amid sales losses. And for some shopping experiences you'll never have again, This Beloved Chain Is Closing All Its Stores.
In a March 9 statement, Children's Place President and CEO Jane Elfers announced that, while the store's fourth quarter sales "exceeded our expectations in both our digital and store channels," sales had dipped significantly between 2020 and 2021. The store's net sales were down 7.8 percent year-over-year, a change the brand attributed specifically to the pandemic.
The Children's Place's sales decrease was "primarily driven by the impact of permanent and temporary store closures and the negative impact of reduced operating hours in our mall stores, as mandated by the mall owners," the brand said in a statement.
As a means of keeping The Children's Place afloat, "the Company is planning to close a total of 122 stores in fiscal 2021, with approximately 25 stores closing in the first quarter, and approximately 97 closures planned by the end of fiscal 2021," the brand announced. The closures follow the 178 brick-and-mortar stores shuttered in 2020.
The Children's Place is far from the only brand that's suffered serious losses amid COVID, however. Read on to discover which other stores are having to close up shop. And for more stores that aren't long for this world, This Popular Department Store Just Filed for Bankruptcy.
Gap and Banana Republic
A total of 100 Gap and Banana Republic stores around the world will shutter in the near future amid falling sales. While Old Navy and Athleta, both owned by Gap Inc., saw sales rise by 7 and 26 percent, respectively, Gap's same-store sales fell 6 percent year-over-year, while Banana Republic's fell 22 percent, prompting the brand to pursue closures. However, since both Old Navy and Athleta have performed so well over the past year, Gap Inc. is opening up to 40 new Old Navy stores and up to 30 new Athletas. And for the latest store closure news delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
The Disney Store
Even the happiest shopping experience on earth couldn't withstand the financial turmoil brought about by the pandemic. In early March, the Disney Store announced that it would be closing up at least 20 percent of its retail stores, focusing instead on its e-commerce business.
"Over the past few years, we've been focused on meeting consumers where they are already spending their time, such as the expansion of Disney store shop-in-shops around the world. We now plan to create a more flexible, interconnected e-commerce experience that gives consumers easy access to unique, high-quality products across all our franchises," said Stephanie Young, Disney's president of consumer products, games, and publishing, in a statement. And for more companies closing up shop, This Popular Beauty Brand Is Shutting Down for Good.
Popular gift and card store Paper Source announced its filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on March 2. The brand, which has been in business for 37 years, will be shuttering 11 of its stores in the near future. "As with many other retail brands, [Paper Source has] sustained deep damage to their finances and operations as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic," said Paper Source CFO Ronald Kruczynski, according to court documents obtained by Retail Dive. He added that the company would be undergoing a "comprehensive restructuring" to improve profitability.
On Feb. 18, sunglasses retailer Solstice announced that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after sales had fallen more than 50 percent between 2019 and 2020. However, despite the brand's financial woes, CEO Mikey Rosenberg said he was hopeful about Solstice's recovery. "We are optimistic about reorganization as we continue to see increasing business in our stores as COVID restrictions are lifted and in the new fashions that our vendors are providing," Rosenberg said in a statement. And for more stores faltering amid the pandemic, This Iconic Chain Is Closing Up to 50 Stores.