Best Buy laid off 5,000 workers and confirmed more store closures are expected this year.
Last month, Best Buy announced plans to close five stores across the United States over the next month. Of those five locations, one store is in New York. Best Buy confirmed plans to close a store in Syracuse as well as two stores in Virginia, one store in Illinois and another in Massachusetts.
On Thursday, Best Buy announced it laid off 5,000 full-time store employees. The company also confirmed it closed 40 stores over the past two years, about 20 each year, and expects to close a higher number in 2021.
“As part of the review process, we have closed approximately 20 large-format locations each of the past two years and expect to close a higher number this year,” CEO Corie Barry told analysts Thursday. “We have also been reducing the length of our average lease term, which will continue to provide us flexibility.”
Best Buy has 450 store leases that will expire in the next three years and the company doesn’t plan to renew all of them, CNN reports.
Online sales for the company have increased and Best Buy plans to hire 2,000 part-time workers. The company believes online 40 percent of all sales in 2021 will come online, up from 19 percent in 2019.
Company officials say the latest changes, as well as future store closures, are because Best Buy must adapt how it operates, due to the change in sales.
“In addition to our physical stores, our operating model needs to evolve to meet our customers’ changing shopping behaviors that have been accelerated by the pandemic,” Barry said, according to USA Today. “The sudden and lasting shift customers have made to shopping more regularly and seamlessly across all of our channels has forced us to look at how we get our work done.”
In the Hudson Valley, Best Buy has locations in Poughkeepsie, Monroe, Middletown, Mohegan Lake, West Nyack, Hartsdale, Yonkers and Mount Vernon.