The COVID pandemic has wrought havoc on the U.S. in countless ways, including forcing a number of businesses out of business. Retailers like Lord&Taylor and Stein Mart had to permanently shut down all their stores in 2020 because of fallout from the pandemic. Then in 2021, companies like Disney and DSW pared down their stores by the dozens. But even as the COVID situation has largely improved, the economy has faced a number of other setbacks. And now, six months into a new year, the store closures have not let up. In fact, one popular chain is continuing to close stores, with another location shutting its doors today. Read on to find out if you'll be affected by the latest store closure.
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Many major companies have already closed locations in 2022.
Companies all across the U.S. are still feeling the effects of the COVID pandemic, and rising inflation is only exacerbating their financial hardships. As a result, several retailers have either already started closing stores or have announced upcoming plans for closures. Walmart closed a number of locations throughout April and May, while CVS and Family Dollar are gearing up to start shuttering stores in mid-June.
And those are hardly the only retailers making headlines for store closures in 2022. Companies such as Whole Foods, Macy's, Sears, H&M, and Bed Bath&Beyond have also closed locations this year.
Another chain is continuing closures today.
Rite Aid is turning off the lights at one of its locations today, The Oregonian recently reported. The drugstore chain has chosen to permanently close its store on Southwest Alder Street in the downtown area of Portland, Oregon, on June 6.
"A decision to close a store is one we take very seriously and is based on a variety of factors including business strategy, lease and rent considerations, local business conditions and viability, and store performance," Alicja Wojczyk, a spokesperson for Rite Aid, told the newspaper, adding that prescriptions at this store will be transferred to other pharmacies.
Rite Aid originally announced closures last year.
Rite Aid initially revealed plans for a large set of closures in late Dec. 2021. The company said it would be closing at least 63 stores throughout the end of last year and throughout the first several months of 2022, CNBC reported. According to the news outlet, Rite Aid said that the "primary focus" of these closures was to reduce costs, improve profitability, and make a "healthy foundation" for the company to grow from.
"Rite Aid is conducting a rigorous assessment of its store base and has implemented a store closure program," the chain said in a statement last year, adding that it was reassessing its foundation to make sure it has the "right stores in the right locations for the communities it serves and for its business."
But the company updated its plans just a few months ago.
The 63 store closures Rite Aid initially announced began in Nov. 2021. But in April 2022, the company made another announcement about store closures, informing shoppers that it was planning to close 82 more locations than what it had originally disclosed in 2021. Rite Aid is now planning to close a total of 145 "unprofitable stores" in order to significantly reduce its costs. According to Wojczyk, the Portland Rite Aid is one of those store closures, which are expected to occur nationwide by the end of the month.
"These store closings are part of our business plan to drive maximum efficiencies, and a number of factors are considered before determining a store closure," Wojczyk told The Oregonian.
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