The Walt Disney Company announced on Wednesday that it will close at least 60 of its retail stores in North America this year, as it plans to “significantly reduce its brick-and-mortar footprint” and focus on e-commerce going forward.
“Over the past few years, we’ve been focused on meeting consumers where they are already spending their time, such as the expansion of Disney store shop-in-shops around the world. We now plan to create a more flexible, interconnected e-commerce experience that gives consumers easy access to unique, high-quality products across all our franchises,” Stephanie Young, president of Consumer Products, Games and Publishing at Disney said in the company’s announcement of the move.
As the following chart shows, Disney has been downsizing its retail footprint for years, with the latest announcement marking the sharpest cut to date. The media and entertainment giant currently operates more than 300 Disney Stores in North America, Europe, Japan and China, down from around 360 stores in 2010. The latest announcement will bring that total below 250, and the company did not comment on how many jobs would be cut as a consequence.
In the fiscal year ended October 3, 2020, Disney’s revenue from retail and merchandise licensing amounted to $4.2 billion from a total of $65.4 billion.