COVID is the final nail in Pier 1's coffin; all stores to close ASAP
June 4, 2020 | 12:47 pm CDT
FORT WORTH, Texas - Pier 1 announced it will be going out of business entirely. All 541 remaining stores will begin liquidation sales as soon as possible. Permanent closures should be complete by October.
The company shut down 450 stores in January and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy soon after in February. The COVID-19 pandemic then hit before it could find a buyer.
“This decision follows months of working to identify a buyer who would continue to operate our business going forward. Unfortunately, the challenging retail environment has been significantly compounded by the profound impact of COVID-19, hindering our ability to secure such a buyer and requiring us to wind down,” Robert Riesbeck, Pier 1’s CEO and CFO states in a release announcing the decision.
The tides have quickly turned for the retailer, who said three weeks ago that it hoped to reopen a "critical mass" of its stores by June 1.
"This is not the outcome we hoped for when we began this process, and we are deeply saddened to move forward with winding down Pier 1," continued Riesbeck.
Like many other retailers, Pier 1 has been struggling for quite some time. It once operated more than 1,000 stores and racked in billions in sales.
JCPenney filed for bankruptcy last month. The retailer stopped selling furniture in store in February 2019 in an effort to optimize store layouts. It sold all sorts of home furniture, ranging from bedroom and home office furniture to mattresses.
In early March, Midwestern furniture retail giant Art Van Furniture went bankrupt and closed all store locations over 60 days. Art Van was one of the biggest furniture retailers in the Midwest, operating 141 stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Missouri, as well as a full service e-commerce website, with an additional 45 freestanding Art Van PureSleep bedding stores. More than 3,100 workers were laid off.
Amazon, changing shopping habits, and online retailers are probably reasons for much of this demise. Let us know what you think in the comments.
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