Foot Locker’s CEO Says “Retail Apocalypse” Headlines Are Missing The Point

by MR Magazine Staff

Foot Locker announced in March that it would close more than 100 US stores this year, and stories attributing the news to a “retail apocalypse” quickly followed. The company’s CEO, Dick Johnson, has some thoughts on those headlines: They totally missed the point. The closures weren’t unusual. Foot Locker has shuttered about 1,000 stores in the past decade, Johnson said at a May 3 summit held by the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA). More important, according to Johnson, are the new stores Foot Locker is opening. Yes, there will be fewer of them, but they’ll offer better experiences for shoppers. It’s a shift happening across much of the retail industry. The record pace of retail closures stems from an overabundance of retail space in the US, combined with shifts in how people shop, most notably the rise of e-commerce. Consumers still like to visit stores, but these changes are forcing companies to ask what they can do to make store visits truly essential. More than ever, a physical space has to offer a unique experience. Read more at Quartz.