Macy’s to close 125 stores throughout country

It is not yet known whether any Tampa Bay area stores will shutter.
Customers hustle in and out of Macy's Countryside.
Customers hustle in and out of Macy's Countryside. [ DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Feb. 5, 2020|Updated Feb. 5, 2020

TAMPA — Macy’s has announced that it will close 125 stores nationwide over the next three years and cut around 2,000 corporate positions.

It is not yet known whether any Tampa Bay area stores will shutter.

Those chosen will be the “least productive,” according to a company news release, “including approximately 30 stores that are in the process of closure now.”

None of those 30 are local stores.

“These approximately 125 stores currently account for approximately $1.4 billion in annual sales,” reads the press release.

Related: The afterlife of Tampa Sears: major demolition and a $5.5 million sale

The Macy’s at Clearwater’s Westfield Countryside mall might be safe.

Last year, it was designated one of the “Growth 150” locations. Of Macy’s roughly 640 locations in 2019, the Clearwater store was among the fraction that together generate more than half the company’s brick-and-mortar revenue.

In a prepared statement, Macy’s chairman and CEO Jeff Gennette said, “We will focus our resources on the healthy parts of our business, directly address the unhealthy parts of the business and explore new revenue streams.”

Macy’s will look for ways to draw more people to its remaining portfolio, including upgrading an additional 100 stores in 2020” says the press release.

Macy’s said it also will open another 50 “Backstage” stores in 2020.

Backstage is a store within the department store offering discounted items that are different from Macy’s usual merchandise.

Macy’s promotes it as “an outlet store that offers fashion-oriented customers another way to shop.”

There are at least two Backstage stores in the Tampa Bay area — one in the WestShore Plaza mall and another in the Westfield Citrus Park mall.

The Countryside Macy’s also received upgrades last year. It added full-time personal stylists, better lighting and a virtual reality station that allows shoppers to see how furniture could look inside their home.

The company also will test a new format called “Market by Macy’s,” a smaller store located outside of malls and that offers traditional plus local offerings.

And its headquarters will relocate from San Francisco to New York City.

The Tampa Bay area has already felt the impact of shoppers preferring to make purchases online rather than at brick-and-mortar establishments.

Related: Florida will have just four Kmart stores. More Sears are closing, too.

The last local Kmart, located in Kenneth City, closed last month.

And Sears stores throughout the area have shuttered in recent years, including the ones at Westfield Citrus Park, Tyrone Square and WestShore Plaza.

Times staff writer Sara DiNatale contributed to this report.