Gap shuttering local stores.
San Francisco-based Gap is actively closing their locations at Town Center at Cobb in Kennesaw, and at The Shoppes at Webb Gin in Snellville.
The Kennesaw closing includes Gap, GapKids and babyGap stores, while the Snellville closing includes Gap, GapKids, babyGap and GapBody.
The Kennesaw stores, located on the mall's second floor in the Macy's wing, will reportedly cease operations no later than January 28th. The stores are currently offering up to 50% off in-stock merchandise, referring to the pricing as their "Good Buy" sale. Separate themed signage says "TAKE A STAND" SELECT STORE FIXTURES NOW ON SALE. (At least they're able to have fun promoting a closing sale.)
The Snellville location, anchoring the side of the center opposite Sprouts Farmers Market and DSW, is offering the same sale and will reportedly close at the same time.
Signs at the Town Center location direct customers to the Gap store at The Avenue West Cobb, about nine miles southwest of Town Center. The Snellville store directs customers to the Gap stores at Mall of Georgia, about 13 miles north.
The closures will leave the company with eighteen locations (including outlet and full line) in Georgia.
Although completely unrelated to this round of closures, Gap has previously closed a number of metro locations. Previous store closures have occurred in Gwinnett Place Mall, Cumberland Mall, North DeKalb Mall, Northlake Mall, Underground Atlanta, Arbor Place Mall and Phipps Plaza. (Gap stores at North Point Mall closed last year and subsequently reopened at Avalon.)
Gap continues to feel the effect of a changing retail landscape, one in which they have failed to maintain their popularity.
In June, Gap Inc. (the company also owns Old Navy, Banana Republic and Athleta) unveiled plans to close 175 of its namesake Gap stores over the next few years in order to "rightsize" the company’s store count. Out of the 175 planned closures, Gap intends to shutter 140 this year and the remaining stores in subsequent years. At the end of the consolidation, Gap will have 800 stores.
Gap, Abercrombie & Fitch, Aeropostale and even J.Crew continue to face headwinds as they tweak their pricing and models to compete with newer "fast fashion" offerings. Forever 21, Topshop, Mango, Zara, etc. have all eaten away at the tween and young adult market once dominated by the aforementioned mall-based retailers.
What can Gap do to recapture lost market share? What and when did you last purchase at Gap? What would you like to see open in place of Gap at Town Center?
Please share your thoughts below.