(WFLA) – Macy’s announced Wednesday it is closing 68 stores, including multiple Tampa Bay area locations. These stores are part of an August 2016 closure announcement, which included around 100 total stores.
The three Tampa Bay area stores are slated to close by year’s end. The local closing will affect 227 employees.
The company said it estimates 6,200 people will be laid off across the country.
“We are closing locations that are unproductive or are no longer robust shopping destinations due to changes in the local retail shopping landscape,” Macy’s CEO Terry J. Lundgren said in a press release. “These are never easy decisions, and we are committed to treating associates affected by these closings with respect and transparency.”
CNBC reports, “Macy’s shares tumbled more than 9 percent after the market’s close Wednesday after it posted disappointing holiday sales and released the locations of 68 of the 100 stores it plans to close as it looks to turn around its performance … Macy’s comparable sales fell 2.1 percent in November and December, which was at the low end of its previous guidance. It maintained its 2016 comparable sales guidance of a 2.5 percent to 3 percent decline, but expects full-year diluted earnings to be in a range of $2.95 to $3.10. It had previously been expecting $3.15 to $3.40.”
Here are the Tampa Bay area stores Macy’s plans to close:
- Lakeland Square in Lakeland
- Sarasota Square in Sarasota
- University Square in Tampa
Here are the other Florida stores slated to close:
- Oviedo Marketplace in Oviedo
- CityPlace in West Palm Beach
One customer was shocked by the news. “Are you serious? No! They have good sales. They’re not supposed to close. When are they closing?” Samantha Bien-Aime asked.
“It’s really sad … (I) really like shopping at Macy’s. It’s one of our best stores we do have for down here in Florida. It’s affordable. The quality of the materials is great,” Stacy Mccabe said.
But other shoppers weren’t concerned. “Not a surprise. They’re expensive. We don’t shop there particularly just cuz they’re overpriced. We go to J.C. Penney instead,” James Jarrell said.
Macy’s stores that remain open will be restructured.
“The significant restructuring of the Macy’s, Inc. operations to focus resources on strategic priorities, improve organizational agility and reduce expense,” the company said in a press release. “The actions announced today are estimated to generate annual expense savings of approximately $550 million, beginning in 2017, enabling the company to invest an additional $250 million in growing the digital business, store-related growth strategies, Bluemercury, Macy’s Backstage and China. These savings, combined with savings from initiatives implemented in early 2016, exceed the $500 million goal communicated in fall of 2015, one year earlier than expected.”
The ailing company had said in February that it would accelerate the closing of unprofitable stores. It says the move is expected to generate a “meaningful level” of cash from the liquidation of store inventories and from the sale or sublease of some of the related real estate.
The Tyrone Square Sears store has been slated to close this month. However, Sears officials said that was not part of the larger closing. That store was previously sold to another company who is tearing it down. Sears said it’s not part of an effort to remain financially viable.