Electronics retailer hhgregg closing 88 stores, cutting 1,500 jobs

March 4 (UPI) -- Electronics and home goods retailer hhgregg announced it is closing 88 stores nationwide and eliminating 1,500 jobs in a bid to "return to profitability," the company said.

The company said it will also close three distribution facilities "to align more closely with its strategic goals to improve liquidity and return to profitability." The closures represent some 40 percent of its stores and the elimination of about 1,500 jobs nationwide. The 61-year-old company said it will remain focused on the remaining 132 stores.

"We are strategically exiting markets and stores that are not financially profitable for us," said Robert J. Riesbeck, hhgregg's president and CEO. "This is a proactive decision to streamline our store footprint in the markets where we have been, and will continue to be, important to our customers, vendor partners and communities. We feel strongly that the markets we will remain in are the right ones for our customers and our business model. "

The move comes after the New York Stock Exchange delisted the company for failing to meet the minimum trading requirement. Bloomberg reported the company will be seeking bankruptcy protection as early as next week.

The stores closing are in 15 states: Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.
Amy R. Connolly

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