Fry’s Electronics is closing all stores, which also includes online shopping
Blaming a lack of retail foot traffic from the COVID-19 pandemic, management at Fry’s Electronics has made the decision to close all 31 Fry’s Electronics retail locations in nine states within the U.S. The company ceased all operations abruptly as of today and posted a message on the website which reads:
After nearly 36 years in business as the one-stop-shop and online resource for high-tech professionals across nine states and 31 stores, Fry’s Electronics, Inc. (“Fry’s” or “Company”), has made the difficult decision to shut down its operations and close its business permanently as a result of changes in the retail industry and the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. The Company will implement the shut down through an orderly wind down process that it believes will be in the best interests of the Company, its creditors, and other stakeholders.
The Company ceased regular operations and began the wind-down process on February 24, 2021. It is hoped that undertaking the wind-down through this orderly process will reduce costs, avoid additional liabilities, minimize the impact on our customers, vendors, landlords and associates, and maximize the value of the Company’s assets for its creditors and other stakeholders.
While COVID supply issues likely contributed to the downfall of Fry’s Electronics, the retailer certainly wasn’t in a good position prior to the pandemic. As of 2019, shelves at Fry’s locations were frequently bare and the company shifted to stocking other types of items beyond electronics.
Just take a look at the Phoenix location in this Retail Archeology video, published during August 2019:
To the retailers credit, Fry’s Electronics did last much longer than big box store competitors like Circuit City and CompUSA. It’s possible that the company may have survived longer if management had shifted to a smaller store footprint, perhaps like Microcenter. Unfortunately, the retailer also struggled with online sales, showcasing the same inventory problems that retail stores were going through; basically pushing customers to sites like NewEgg and Amazon for in-stock items.