Sunday, March 5, 2017

Out With the Old and In With the New at RadioShack?

Stores liquidating, but not closing? 

The RadioShack store at Toco Hills shopping center started an "EVERYTHING MUST GO" sale Friday that looks a lot like a closing sale, but reportedly is not. The store, which also has a Sprint wireless store inside, is reportedly "clearing out in-stock merchandise from it and other stores in order to make room for new merchandise."  

A store employee indicated to me that despite the appearance of the store, the store is not closing, only liquidating.

As the pictured signs indicate, all merchandise is being offered at between 20-30% off retail prices with the exception of Sprint merchandise and plans, which are not included in the sale.   

The signage seems very much to indicate a "closing sale," and if corporate is feeding associates misleading information about "liquidating to restock," then that's just wrong.

In the 90s and early 2000s, the 2,145 square foot corner space was home to BackTracks, a used electronic media retailer. Adjacent to RadioShack, the once popular Gorin's operated from the 2,059 square foot space most recently occupied by Young Chefs Academy. 

Founded in Boston in 1921, RadioShack has significantly trimmed its store count since its most recent Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in early 2015. At its peak, RadioShack had about 5,000 stores. Today the company operates about 1,500 locations.  

General Wireless, an affiliate of Standard General, completed its purchase of RadioShack in May 2015. General Wireless entered into a partnership with Sprint that allowed the wireless carrier to operate "shop in shop" Sprint stores within existing RadioShack outlets. The goal was to re-brand the stores "around a streamlined array of necessities, to be sold alongside Sprint Corp. wireless products."  

While a novel idea to team a struggling electronics retailer with a growing wireless carrier, the effort seems in vain with word coming this week that General Wireless is preparing to file for bankruptcy. Sources tell Bloomberg that "a filing could happen within the coming days and will probably result in liquidation."

According to the RadioShack website, the chain continues to operate about 20 locations in the greater metro Atlanta area including the Toco Hills and Chamblee Village stores inside the perimeter.  RadioShack also operates stores in Carrollton, Newnan, Kennesaw, Woodstock, Norcross and Marietta, among other cities.

Visits to the Norcross and Chamblee locations revealed that their stores are both actively closing as RadioShack, with reported plans to reopen "soon" as stand-alone Sprint stores. Employees at both the Covington and Marietta stores indicate that like Toco Hills, they too are "clearing out all in-stock merchandise to get new stuff in." The Kennesaw location indicated that they are permanently closing as of this Wednesday, March 8th, with no plans to reopen as Sprint or anything else.  

If RadioShack does in fact close, what would you like to see open in place of it and the adjacent former Young Chefs Academy at Toco Hills?  What is the status of your local RadioShack?  Is RadioShack a dead business or could they reinvent themselves to cater to today's consumer?  

Please share your thoughts below.  


Coolio said...

20-30% off retail prices brings the prices down to the Best Buy regular price level... no thanks.

In a way, it's kinda sad, but they had their heads in the sand if they really thought the general public would continue to buy stuff at inflated prices after the invention of the internet.

jeff a. taylor said...

You got that right Coolio. Couple years I badly needed digital coax connects. So I rolled into RS on Roswell Rd-Johnson Ferry 3min away. I wasn't expecting a screaming deal but like $5 for a two-pack was insulting. Went home ordered a bag of 10 for like $3. The 7/11 pricing has been a complete failure.

Anonymous said...

So 30% off everything includes all their Tandys?

Anonymous said...

This has nothing to do with Radio Shack, but oh, how I miss Gorins! Especially the almond chicken salad melt. Mmmmm!

Anonymous said...

Chicken Salad Chick, who are expanding OTP, would be wise to jump into Toco. Especially being so near the Mason Mill tennis/rec area. It would be a slam dunk success.

Anonymous said...

Agree with Chicken Salad Chick, Anonymous at 9:41 am!

Anonymous said...

Reported in several business publications today, Radio Shack parent company has filed for bankruptcy

Anonymous said...

Filing for bankruptcy, again.

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