Pier 1 Imports Closes 450 Stores

Pier 1 imports logo that is about to shut down

via. Wikipedia Commons

Pier 1 imports logo that is about to shut down

Recently, Pier 1 Imports has confirmed that they will be closing 450 of their stores across Canada and the United States (around half of all their locations), citing that they were losing business to numerous competitors, such as Target and Walmart. Although the specific locations being shutdown were unspecified, newly appointed CEO Robert Riesbeck stated that “reducing the amount of our brick-and-mortar locations is a necessary business decision.”


In a statement to investors, it was also verified that many of their distribution centers would be shut down and that a separate liquidator would manage the closings. “Fiscal third-quarter sales and margins [have] remained under pressure,” Riesbeck added, but looking ahead, he predicts “improved financial results.”


That being said, it is an undisputed fact that a handful of employees will have lost their jobs following the company’s execution of plans. Even worse, the business is planning to lay-off around 40% of its workers (equating to approximately 300 people) at their corporate headquarters in Fortworth, Texas. No information was released, however, with specifics regarding their decision’s effects on employees.


At one point, Pier 1 shares fell by 17%, and their announcement of closing multiple stores did not help, as can be expected, for shortly after, their shares depreciated by another 6%. A few years ago, their average share price was $300; now, it is a mere $5.18.


For some years, Pier 1 has been struggling to keep up with shoppers’ recent demands of online service. To combat the rise of competition from home-good companies, they additionally are attempting to freshen-up the store. Among other things, they are altering their operating system; this will provide shoppers with the convenience of online ordering and shipping, a plan which their lenders approved.  


According to analysts, Pier 1 has been added to many of their “bankruptcy watchlists,” and Bloomberg reports that they currently are consulting lenders in regards to filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which generally involves the reorganization of a business’s debts.  


However said, this occurrence is not a rare one amongst retailers. At the end of 2019, it was announced that over 9,302 stores were closed within the USA, generally due to the radical changes “in consumer habits.” With a 59% jump compared to the year 2018, the number of shutdowns is also the highest number recorded since 2012.