Urban Outfitters Says Retail Landscape Is Oversaturated

by MR Magazine Staff

After reporting lower-than-estimated fourth quarter earnings, Urban Outfitters shares dropped more than eight percent on Wednesday and CEO Richard Hayne says the dire state of the retail landscape is to blame. On this week’s earnings call, Hayne said the U.S. market is oversaturated with retail stores and too much of the space is taken up by stores selling apparel. “Our industry, not unlike the housing industry, saw too much square footage capacity added in the ‘90s and early 2000s. Thousands of new doors opened and rents soared. This created a bubble. And like housing, that bubble has now burst,” he said. And the result of the result of the burst are “doors shuttering and rents retreating,” with the trend continuing and potentially accelerating in the future, said. Coming off of what Hayne called a disappointing holiday season, with higher markdowns than expected, the store isn’t pressed to sign any new leases. The Navy-Yard based Urban Outfitters operates about 200 Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie locations in the U.S. and close to 130 Free People stores. This year they plan to open up 15 new stores in North America, fewer than the 26 and 29 locations they opened over the last two years, respectively, according to CNBC. And as for the company’s food and beverage operation, it opened up two new restaurants in fiscal year 2017 and acquired 6 Vetri Family restaurants. Read more at Philadelphia Magazine.