News: All US Virgin Megastores To Shut Down By Summer
Thursday, Mar 5, 2009 9:22AM
With music sales continuing to decline, the remaining six Virgin Megastores in the nation will all be going out of business this summer.
The annual slump in sales ultimately determined the fate of the retail music store chain.
A slowing economy took its toll. To buck declining music sales, the chain broadened its offerings in the last few years to apparel, books and electronics. The six remaining stores took in about $170 million in revenue a year, down from the $230 million from 23 stores at its peak in 2002. (Associated Press)
The company will now look to make their profits by selling the properties.
"I've been pushing back a little bit on the notion that this is just another casualty of the music industry," Simon Wright, Virgin's chief executive, said in a statement, adding, "Our six stores from a retail point of view are also our six best stores from a real estate point of view." (Artist Direct)
With the nationwide closings, over a 1,000 employees will lose their jobs.
The company's 52,000 square-foot flagship Times Square location will close in mid-April. Other locations being shutdown of in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orlando, Denver and a second location in New York. The move will lead to 1,000 store employees being laid off, along with another 60 at the corporate level. Virgin still has 150 megastores throughout the world, which are owned by local companies with licensing agreements. (All Headline News)
The Times Square location was the previous mega store announced to shut down.
Renowned as the highest volume music retailer in the United States, the iconic megastore will close this spring. It has been at the center of speculation since August 2007 when the Virgin Entertainment Group North America was acquired by two real estate companies, the Related Cos. and Vornado, in a joint venture. (Billboard)