Plans For DSW Location Closings in 2022

Joel Eisenberg

Last year, the footwear company announced the permanent closure of 65 locations “over the next four years” due to a deficit of nearly $500 million suffered during the height of the pandemic. Are further location closures being considered?

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DSWShutterstock

Author’s Note

This article is based on corporate postings and accredited media reports. Linked information within this article is attributed to the following outlets: Wikipedia.org, BestLifeOnline.com, DesignerBrands.com, and Google.com.

Introduction

As excerpted from Wikipedia, which features a comprehensive overview of the venerable footwear chain: Designer Brands Inc. is an American company that sells designer and name brand shoes, and fashion accessories. It owns the Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) store chain, and operates over 500 stores in the United States and an e-commerce website. The company also owns private-label footwear brands including Audrey Brooke, Kelly & Katie, Lulu Townsend, and Poppie Jones. The company was founded in 1969 as Shonac Corporation, as the shoe licensee for Value City.

As with many retailers since the advent of the pandemic, DSW has suffered challenging business setbacks. For a perspective written during Covid-19’s early days, BestLifeOnline.com’s archived article, “This Beloved Store is Closing 65 Locations,” illustrates the nature of those business-altering issues.

From the BestLifeOnline.com piece: On Tuesday, March 16, DSW CEO Roger Rawlins confirmed that the business had seen a 34 percent dip in sales amid the pandemic. To offset these losses—amounting to approximately $489 million in total—the company plans to shutter 24 of its stores in 2021, and an additional 41 over the next four years, Columbus Business First reports. "Until [customers] come back to us for the social occasion, this is the game that we've gotta play," explained Rawlins.

Currently, per DesignerBrands.com: Our primary concept, DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse, offers brand name and designer dress, casual and athletic footwear and accessories. The first store opened in 1991 in Dublin, Ohio. Today, DSW operates more than 500 stores in 44 states. Designer Brands also operates several retail concepts in Canada, including The Shoe Company and Shoe Warehouse, which provide a convenient footwear solution for the whole family, as well as DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse – nearly 150 locations in all. 

Less the announced closures, will other business decisions impact the number of store locations?

Let us explore further.

The State of DSW, 2022

Optimistic news from ChainStoreAge.com was published early last month. As excerpted from “DSW Parent Company Q1 Sales Climb; Tops Street”: Designer Brands’ net income rose to $26.2 million, or $.34 a share, for the quarter ended April 30, from $17.0 million, or $0.22 a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted earnings were $0.48 cents, easily topping analysts’ estimates of $0.24 a share. Net sales rose 18.1% to $830.5 million, above estimates of $815.4 million. Same-store sales were up 15.3%. Cost of sales rose 13.9%, or less than sales, to push gross margin up to 33.2% from 30.7%.

The news remains positive as the company, according to the article, remains on track to achieve its goal to not only double its owned brands sales by 2026, but to meet its target of $4 billion in revenue in fiscal 2026.

Though Designer Brands, Inc. owns other companies, the spillover of the positive news to this point will primarily support DSW, its largest entity.

Conclusion

As I frequently conclude articles related to rumors of business closures, the DSW chain is not going out of business, which a targeted Google search will verify is an ongoing concern. The announced DSW closings remain of individual locations and are strategic in nature.

Should anything change in this regard, I will update my readers here on NewsBreak.

Thank you for reading.

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I am an award-winning author, screenwriter for film and television, and producer. My mission on News Break is to share socially important perspectives on both culture and pop-culture. Member of PEN America, and the WGA.

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