Year-to-date store closings are already outpacing those of 2008, when the last U.S. recession was raging, according to Credit Suisse Group. About 2,880 closings have been announced so far this year, compared with 1,153 for this period of 2016.
The Indianapolis-based retailer, which has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, has filed a plan with the court to close its 132 stores and sell off its remaining merchandise if it can't find a buyer by April 7.
The appliance-and-electronics retailer never disclosed the identity of the proposed buyer, but statements by attorneys in court and in a court filing suggest it was affiliated with Zimmerman Advertising, the company's advertising agency.
The company did not disclose the identity of the purchaser. CEO Robert Riesbeck said HHGregg is “fully committed” to continuing to operate the 132 stores that will remain after it completes the closings announced last week of 88 stores.
Indianapolis-based HHGregg Inc. is turning to investment banks “to pursue a range of potential strategic and financial transactions" as the struggling appliances and electronics retailer battles sinking sales.
Robert Riesbeck, appointed to the top job last year, says growth opportunities in appliances and furniture are sufficient to offset declines in the company's battered consumer electronics product line.