8 Iconic Retail Chains That Closed Stores in 2021
Companies were forced to downsize, which meant shuttering a number of locations for good.
To say that 2021 was a challenging year for retail would be something of an understatement. It was a challenging year for just about everyone, of course, but between the ongoing COVID pandemic and supply chain disruptions, a number of major companies struggled to keep their doors open. And while some retailers shuttered just a handful of locations, others were forced to clean house. Read on for a look back at the biggest chains that closed stores in 2021.
Bed Bath & Beyond
After announcing in 2020 that it would be closing 200 stores by 2022, Bed Bath & Beyond began the work of downsizing and closed over 40 stores in January and February of this year, CNBC reported. The retailer said it ultimately hoped to save between $250 and $350 million by shuttering the 200 total locations.
While CVS didn't actually make any major closures in 2021, the drugstore giant announced significant reductions on the horizon. Starting in 2022, CVS will be closing 300 stores a year for three years, adding up to 900 stores total, USA Today reported. The plan is to pivot from retail to health care services, a spokesperson told the newspaper.
Disney magic may be forever, but Disney Stores are not. In 2021, the company announced it would be closing 60 of its retail locations on or before Sept. 15, per USA Today. As the newspaper noted, these closures left about two dozen Disney Stores, outside of the more than 600 locations within Disney theme parks.
The other shoe dropped for DSW. In March, Columbus Business First reported that DSW would be closing 65 stores over the next four years, starting with 24 in 2021. The shoe brand said that the pandemic had changed its sales model and forced the closures.
In November, CNN Business reported that Kmart would be closing its last store in Michigan, where the store was founded in 1899. The closure, along with several others, left just six Kmart locations remaining in the continental U.S. by the end of this year. As CNN Business noted, Kmart filed for bankruptcy and was acquired by Sears—which then filed for bankruptcy itself in 2018.
Like CVS, Macy's is merely planning on closures—but there might be good news for fans of the department store. In November, CNBC reported that Macy's would be delaying the closures of its 60 remaining stores, which it had planned to shutter by 2023. Nevertheless, 10 stores will still be doing dark in the near future, with their locations to be announced in Jan. 2o22.
Back in 2020, Office Depot announced that it would be cutting over 13,000 jobs and getting rid of several retail stores by 2023, CNBC reported. Closures did indeed pick up in 2021, with local news outlets reporting on Office Depot locations closing for good in Texas and New Jersey. The latter state saw its last Office Depot stores close in September.
Victoria's Secret has undergone some big changes over the past few years, and in 2021, that included reducing the lingerie company's number of locations. In February, the company announced it would be closing 50 more stores, just a year after closing over 240 locations, per the New York Daily News.