Ross to open 100 stores in 2018
Ross Stores is not backing down from its aggressive expansion.
The off-price giant opened 23 Ross Dress for Less stores and six dd’s Discounts stores across 14 different states in February and March. The new locations are part of the retailer’s plans to add approximately 100 new stores – 75 Ross and 25 dd’s Discounts locations – during fiscal 2018.
“With these recent openings, we continued our growth in both new and existing markets,” said Jim Fassio, president and chief development officer. “Our newest market for Ross Dress for Less is Nebraska, and for dd’s Discounts, we entered Illinois with two new stores.”
The recent openings give the company a total of 1,651 stores across 38 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam. The total includes 1,432 Ross Dress for Less stores and 219 dd’s Discounts
“As we look out over the long-term, we remain confident that Ross can grow to 2,000 locations and dd’s Discounts can become a chain of 500 stores,” said Fassio.
For its recently completed fiscal year, Ross reported net earnings of $1.4 billion, up $1.1 billion last year. Sales grew 10% to $14.1 billion. Same-store sales were up 4%.
Supercenter retailer to try on smaller-store format
Meijer is going urban.
The Midwest retailer plans to open six small-format stores in urban locations, reported mlive.com. Instead of the Meijer name, the stores will have a name that is reflective of their particular neighborhood, according to the report.
Meijer will pilot the concept with a 39,000-sq.-ft. location, called Bridge Street Market, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The store, due to open this summer, is part of a mixed-use development.
“Ultimately, we hope this is successful enough where it can go all the places where we can’t get in and build a supercenter,” said Mike Kinstle, Meijer’s VP of real estate, in remarks at an International Council of Shopping Centers conference on urban development. “We want this to be a complement to the supercenter format.”
The new format will emphasize fresh foods and locally sourced products along with an assortment of Meijer-branded products, according to the report.
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Report: Toys ‘R’ Us planning to liquidate U.S. stores
The nation’s largest toy store retailer is making preparations to liquidate its operations in the United States, Bloomberg reported late Thursday afternoon.
Toys “R” Us filed for bankruptcy in September. So far it, has been unable to reach a debt restructuring deal with its lenders or find a buyer to keep some of its businesses operating, according to the Bloomberg report, which cited people familiar with the matter.
The retailer has been burdened with a heavy debt load since 2005, when it was purchased by private equity investors KKR, Bain Capital, and Vornado Realty Trust in a $7.5 billion buyout. But in recent years, heavy competition from Amazon and other online players, as well as from Walmart and Target, has taken a heavy toll on its results. Toys “R” Us has struggled to update its offerings and processes, both online and in store, and has lagged behind its competitors digitally. Its debt has put a strain on its ability to invest in its business.
In a big blow, the chain had a disappointing holiday at a time when most retailers benefitted from surging consumer confidence and a strong economy. CEO Dave Brandon acknowledged “operational missteps” during the holiday season.
In February, The Wall Street Journal reported that Toys “R” Us was planning to shutter an additional 200 stores and lay off a significant portion of its corporate staff. This came after a court filing in January in which the chain said it was planning to shrink its U.S. store portfolio by as much as 20% — about 180 locations — as part of a plan to emerge from bankruptcy before the 2018 holiday season.
Toys “R” Us’ liquidation would be a big blow for the overall toy industry, as the chain makes up about 15% of U.S. toy revenue, Bloomberg reported.
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