15. Office Depot
> Closings: 75
> Total stores: 1,441
> Industry: Office products
In August 2016, three months after a federal judge blocked the company’s proposed merger with Staples, Office Depot announced its plans to close approximately 300 stores over the next three years. The company intends to close 75 locations in 2017. The closures are part of a cost savings program that Office Depot expects will generate $250 million in benefits by 2018. The company has already closed 400 stores since 2014, but plans to expand its pilot program for a new store concept by opening 100 redesigned stores roughly half the size of a typical Office Depot location.
> Closings: 88
> Total stores: 220
> Industry: Appliance, electronics, and furniture
In March 2017, four days before the company disclosed it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, HHGregg announced its plans to shutter 88 stores by the middle of April. The closings amount to 40% of HHGregg’s total store count and will affect an estimated 1,500 employees. Most of the closures will take place in Florida, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. The company’s decision to close stores and file for bankruptcy comes at a time when more and more consumers are doing their shopping online. This has forced many retailers to slim down their brick-and-mortar operations. HHGregg lost money in the last two years, and the company’s total revenue fell by 8% from 2015 to 2016.
13. The Children’s Place
> Closings: 80
> Total stores: 930
> Industry: Children’s apparel
The Children’s Place is one of many retailers shifting focus away from its brick-and-mortar operations and dedicating more resources to digital distribution channels. In 2012, Children’s Place began a series of store closings that will amount to 200 closed locations by the end of 2017. Having already closed 120 stores, the company plans to shutter the remaining 80 locations this year. One reason for the store closures is Children’s Place’s prioritization of e-commerce sales. The company reported that online sales have increased in the areas where brick-and-mortar stores have been closed. The Children’s Place’s online sales have increasingly accounted for a larger share of total revenue, from 15.9% of net sales in 2014 to 17.1% in 2015.
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