Popular clothing store plans to close 100 of its 600 stores as ‘retail ice age’ looms and shoppers go online

As the dreaded “retail apocalypse” unfolds, another popular clothing chain has announced that it will be closing about 17% of its stores.

The Children’s Place will close 100 of its 600 remaining stores over the next year in what leadership has described as a “fleet optimization initiative”.

The Children's Place will close 100 of its 600 remaining stores over the next year

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The Children’s Place will close 100 of its 600 remaining stores over the next yearPhoto credit: Getty
The retailer is transitioning to an online storefront based on market trends

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The retailer is transitioning to an online storefront based on market trendsPhoto credit: Getty
Gap has also announced that they will close 50 to 55 Gap and Banana Republic stores in 2023

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Gap has also announced that they will close 50 to 55 Gap and Banana Republic stores in 2023Photo credit: Getty

The decision was made public on March 16, according to BestLife, when President and CEO Jane Effers broke the news on a conference call on the results.

Elfers explained that the company expects to close about 100 locations and that the “majority of these store closures” are planned for 2023.

She did not reveal specific information about which stores would be closing or when the closures would take place.

The retailer has reportedly struggled in recent years and plans to transition to a digital-first business model.

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As of 2019, Children’s Place has permanently closed 315 of its physical stores.

Elfers explained that the move towards an online storefront is based on market trends.

“Our fleet optimization strategy has been a critical part of the structural realignment of our business and is in line with the digital purchasing preferences of our current and future customers,” she said.

The retail guide pointed to generational differences in shopping habits.

“The data are clear. Millennials have a strong preference for online shopping and this is predicted to continue to increase among Gen Z parents.”

The Children’s Place isn’t the only clothing brand with plans to downsize.

Gap has also announced that they are moving forward with their agenda to “close 50 to 55 Gap and Banana Republic stores” in 2023.

Chief Financial Officer Katrina O’Connell noted that the business has reduced the size of its physical portfolio over the years.

On the company’s website, Gap explained that the reduction should result in a “smaller and healthier store fleet.”

“As we adapt to current market conditions and meet increasing online demand, we carefully review our properties to support the best path forward,” the company wrote.

As some shoppers start to freshen up their spring wardrobe, it might be wise to check to see if their favorite clothing stores are still open.

https://www.the-sun.com/money/7665014/childrens-place-gap-closing-retail-apocalypse/ Popular clothing store plans to close 100 of its 600 stores as ‘retail ice age’ looms and shoppers go online

CELINE CASTRONUOVO

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