Is Best Buy’s Loss GameStop’s Gain, or Just More Pain?

Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) is closing down its 257 Best Buy Mobile stores by the end of May, ending the consumer electronics superstore's foray into small retail locations, which began over a decade ago. Best Buy has found that the industry has matured, and with the broad proliferation of competition, it's simply become too expensive to operate these niche outlets.Because the electronics retailer's big-box stores already include store-in-store boutiques dedicated to carriers and manufacturers like Apple, AT&T (NYSE: T), Samsung, Sprint, and Verizon -- and because Best Buy is adding more of these this year -- there's little reason to continue competing against itself with the stand-alone stores.So Best Buy isn't exiting the mobile phone business, just consolidating it, and that should worry GameStop (NYSE: GME), which is hoping to turn around its own mobile phone business to help offset its declining gaming market.Image source: Getty Images.Can't game the systemAlthough GameStop is best known for selling video games, under its Technology Brands division it also operates 1,500 stores under the names Spring Mobile AT&T, Simply Mac, and Cricket. The Spring Mobile stores sell AT&T branded wireless products, including its DirecTV satellite service, while the Simply Mac stores sell Apple products, from its smartphones to laptops and computers. The Cricket brand is the prepaid wireless subsidiary of AT&T.This business has been struggling alongside GameStop's video game and console business, forcing it to take a $350 million to $400 million writedown this quarter, mostly attributed to the Technology Brands division.The division had a horrible Christmas season, with sales plunging 19%, which it said was driven by limited availability of Apple's iPhone X and changes made by AT&T to the compensation structure in 2017. It also blamed a longer upgrade cycle -- as consumers kept their existing phones longer -- for the massive charge it was taking.While Best Buy Continue Reading

Best Buy to close all 257 mobile stores, including several in Georgia

In 2006, Best Buy began opening much smaller “Best Buy Mobile” stores across the country, typically in shopping malls. A year later, the iPhone made its debut. These stores specialized in the sale and service of cell phones and other small devices. At one time, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Best Buy operated more than 400 of these stores. But now the Richfield, Minnesota-based retailer is closing all 257 of its remaining mobile stores, including eight in Georgia. A memo was sent to employees Feb. 28, and the company notified the federal Securities and Exchange Commission. The company will close all of the mobile stores by May 31. READ | Survey: Experts say Amazon will pick Atlanta or N. Virginia for HQ2 READ | Judge grants bond to Gwinnett man accused of rape, false imprisonment READ | Sandy Springs tightens grip on Airbnbs with more rules, expenses The company’s CEO Hubert Joly said on an earnings call that the stores were closing due to “changing economics in the mobile industry,” Dayton Daily News reported. “Back then the mobile phone business was in a period of rapid growth and margins were high,” Joly said. “Fast forward to 2018 and the mobile phone business has matured, margins have compressed and the cost of operations in our stand-alone stores is higher than our big-box stores.” According to Best Buy’s online store directory, it operates 37 stores in Georgia, eight of which are “Best Buy Mobiles.” All of the stores are in shopping malls and measure about 1,400 square feet. A regular Best Buy store covers about 40,000 square feet. The stores are located at the Cumberland Mall in Atlanta, the Mall of Georgia in Buford, the Arbor Place Mall in Douglasville, the Town Center at Cobb in Kennesaw, the Mall at Stonecrest, the Albany Mall, the Georgia Square Mall in Athens and the Peachtree Mall in Columbus. According to Continue Reading

Best Buy soars after posting best holiday sales since 2003

Matthew Boyle, Bloomberg Published 6:55 am, Thursday, March 1, 2018 Photo: Bloomberg Photo By Luke Sharrett. Image 1of/1 CaptionClose Image 1 of 1 Shopper outside a Best Buy store in Louisville, Kentucky, on Nov. 23, 2017. Shopper outside a Best Buy store in Louisville, Kentucky, on Nov. 23, 2017. Photo: Bloomberg Photo By Luke Sharrett. Best Buy soars after posting best holiday sales since 2003 1 / 1 Back to Gallery Best Buy Co. delivered a rosy outlook for the year ahead after its best holiday sales performance in more than a decade - a much-needed boost to the retailer's turnaround plan. The company's shares rose in early trading Thursday after the company forecast first-quarter and full-year revenue ahead of analysts' estimates. Same-store sales over the holiday period increased the most since 2003, fueled by purchases of mobile phones, video-game consoles, appliances and smart-home devices. Despite sitting squarely in Amazon's crosshairs, Best Buy has weathered the internet giant's encroachment better than most retailers. It helps that the consumer-electronics industry had its best holiday period in years, boosted by new gadgets like Nintendo's Switch, while rivals such as Sears and Sam's Club have closed stores. "We believe Best Buy posted one of its most impressive performances in recent memory," Anthony Chukumba, an analyst at Loop Capital Markets, said in a note. "We are also encouraged by management's better-than-expected 2018 guidance." Recommended Video: Now Playing: Kohl’s Defies Analysts By Posting Huge Holiday Sales Gains Kohl's lead the pack when it came to holiday sales in 2017 besting rivals like Macy's and J.C. Penney. The retailer said Monday that sales rose 6.9 percent from Nov.-Dec., topping the overall retail industry’s 4.9 percent gain as Continue Reading

Best Appliance/Electronics Store

Best Buy Multiple locations Best Buy promises “expert service, unbeatable price.” That includes all its stores in Northwest Indiana. Residents and businesses in the Region can seek out the latest in electronics and home appliances—and are promised service that goes beyond the sale. Its Geek Squad department offers appliance services that include delivery, installation, protection and servicing, plus 24/7 support for computers and tablets, TVs and home theaters, and more. Plenty of customers appreciate the trade-in and recycling programs for old products, as well as the price match guarantee on qualifying new products. Drivers in Northwest Indiana can find convenient car electronics, and camera buffs can choose cameras and camcorders for the memorable, the beautiful, and the laugh-out-loud moments in life. SECOND PLACE Maruszczak Appliance Location: 7809 W. Lincoln Highway, Schererville Phone: 219-865-0555 THIRD PLACE Hometown Appliance & Electronics Location: 11130 W. 93rd Ave., St. John Phone: 219-365-4758 Continue Reading

Shopping for electronics? The Best Buy Black Friday ad is a must-see

If you're shopping for electronics, this is the Black Friday ad you've been waiting for.Best Buy released its Black Friday sale circular early Wednesday morning.Nearly 1,000 Best Buy stores in 47 states will open at 5 p.m. Thanksgiving, the same time as last year, the company announced in a news release. Most stores will close at 1 a.m. and then reopen 8 a.m. Black Friday.Now through Nov. 11, hundreds of Black Friday deals are available in-store and online at, while supplies last. More: All the best Black Friday deals you can get right nowThe 50-page ad includes a 50-inch Sharp 4K television for $179.99, $320 off the regular price of 499.99. This Smart TV will only be available in-store.According to a news release, almost everything in the Black Friday ad will be available on, starting Thanksgiving Day morning. Members of Best Buy's loyalty program, My Best Buy, get a chance to grab some of the hottest deals in the Black Friday ad early, the release notes.Early Access sales will take place Nov. 20 for Elite Plus and Elite members and Nov. 21 for all My Best Buy members. More: Best apps to save you money over Black Friday and beyond Here are some of the top deals from the Best Buy Black Friday preview: A large selection of television deals including the Insignia 39-inch LED Smart HDTV for $179.99, $100 off the regular price. Amazon Fire 7 Tablet for $29.99. Amazon Echo (2nd generation) for $79.99, $20 off the regular price. Beats by Dr. Dre Beats Studio2 Wireless Over-the-Ear Headphones for $159.99, $220 off the regular price of $379.99. 128 GB iPad mini 4 for $274.99, $125 off the regular price. KitchenAid Professional 500 Series Stand Mixer for $199.99, $300 off the regular price of $499.99. Google Home Mini for $29.99, plus get a $10 Best Buy gift card. HP DeskJet 3637 Wireless All-in-One Instant Ink Ready Printer for $29.99, $40 off the regular price. Continue Reading

Best Buy unexpectedly beats on sales; shares at record peak

By Richa Naidu CHICAGO (Reuters) - Best Buy Co Inc reported an unexpected rise in first-quarter comparable sales and the No. 1 U.S. electronics retailer said it planned to save $600 million in costs by the end of fiscal 2021, sending shares to an all-time high on Thursday. Best Buy, like home-improvement chain Home Depot Inc, has benefited as an improving job market has spurred homeowners to spend more, particularly on appliances and home theaters. In March, the U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near 10-year low. Chief Executive Hubert Joly, speaking on a conference call, said Best Buy was "very mobilized" to maximize its gains from a competitor filing for bankruptcy during the quarter. Joly did not name the competitor. "We believe we're seeing some lift in the sales in the stores, of course, around (the competitor's) locations in appliances and home theater," said Joly, adding the rival company had about a 20 percent overlap with Best Buy's stores. Electronics retailer hhgregg Inc filed for bankruptcy in March, after struggling for years with declining sales. Shares of Best Buy, based in Richfield, Minnesota, surged as much as 16 percent to $58.50 in morning trading. The company reported a 1.6 rise in first-quarter sales at stores open for more than a year, against analyst expectations for a decline of 1.5 percent, according to research firm Consensus Metrix. Joly said the unexpected growth in sales was driven by demand for gaming and mobile products, and the arrival of delayed federal tax refund checks. The company said it expects to build further on those gains, with second-quarter comparable sales growing 1.5-2.5 percent. "We expect Best Buy to continue to perform at a high level across multiple categories, with appliances likely to be one of the bright spots given market dynamics," Moody's retail analyst Charlie O'Shea wrote in a note. Net income fell to $188 million, or 60 cents a share, in the three months ended April 29, handily Continue Reading

Best Buy’s quarterly profit beats Street view as cost-cutting efforts gain traction

Best Buy’s profit got a jolt in its latest quarter, topping Wall Street expectations as the consumer electronics retailer slashed costs. The surprise profit strength hinted that CEO Hubert Joly’s turnaround efforts are gaining traction and helped overshadow the company’s continuing struggle to boost sales. Best Buy’s shares jumped as much as 8.5% before ending the day up 3% at $26.22. “I was very encouraged by the report,” Anthony Chukumba, managing director at BB&T Capital Management, told the Daily News. “They gained market share, their profit margins improved, and management is optimistic about the upcoming holiday season,” he said. The company is still battling intense competition from online retailers like, as well as an overall decline in demand for consumer electronics products as Americans spend more on food and gas. Best Buy said it swung to a profit of $461 million in its fiscal first quarter, while its adjusted per-share profit of 33 cents surpassed analysts’ average forecast of just 19 cent. The company cut $95 million more in costs during the quarter. But overall revenue fell 3% to $9.04, below the $9.22 billion Wall Street predicted. Its same-store sales, which exclude recently opened or closed locations, dropped 1.9%, and the company said it expects sales by that measure to continue to fall in the second and third quarters. With News Wire Services Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Best Buy to close two NCCo stores, open new one

Best Buy says it will close two of its existing Delaware locations this summer to make room for a new store at the Christiana Fashion Center.The Minnesota-based consumer electronics retailer announced plans Monday to shutter its 48,000-square-foot Stanton store off Kirkwood Highway (Del. 2).The roughly 75 full- and part-time employees at that store were informed of the plans Sunday night, company spokeswoman Carly Charlson said.Best Buy announced in April that it would be moving all 120 employees from a store in the Center Point Plaza II shopping center off Churchmans Road (Del. 58) – also in Stanton – to a new Christiana Fashion Center store about 2 miles to the south. Closing the other Stanton location was not revealed to be part of the plan at that time.“We recently made the decision to combine the two stores into this one larger location,” Charlson said. “So we then decided not to renew or extend our lease at either store.”Bob Stella, whose company Windsor I LLC owns the Kirkwood Highway property, said he was told of Best Buy's plans months ago. Best Buy, he said, first opened there in 1990, and at one time the location was among the chain's top sellers in terms of volume.Stella said he's received some interest in the property but "nothing that makes economic sense at this point."The last day of operation for the two existing Best Buys will be Aug. 14, Charlson said.The new store in the Christiana Fashion Center is slated to open later that same week.Best Buy expects to retain about half of the employees at its store off Kirkwood Highway by relocating them to either the Christiana Fashion Center location or another store in the Concord Mall off Concord Pike (U.S. 202) in Brandywine Hundred, Charlson said.The chain currently operates four locations in Delaware, including a store in Dover. Charlson said no changes are expected at the Kent County location.The 46,000-square-foot Best Buy under construction Continue Reading

Bon-Ton ‘best hometown store in America,’ CEO hopes

If you listen to the naysayers, you'd think the day of the department store has passed.Retail giants Macy's, J.C. Penney Co. and Sears have all shuttered locations as shoppers do more of their buying at Amazon and other online retailers.But Bon-Ton Stores Inc. CEO Kathryn Bufano has a blueprint to keep shoppers coming through the doors of the retailer's 263 stores in the Midwest, Northeast and upper Great Plains states. The stores operate under one of eight names, including Bon-Ton, Carson's, Elder-Beerman and Herberger's.Carrying more merchandise from big-name designers as well as more locally themed merchandise - these are part of Bufano's playbook.Among the initiatives:“FAO Schwarz still has international and national cachet,” said Burt Flickinger, III, president of Strategic Resource Group, a New York-based retail consulting firm.Bon-Ton Stores, the parent company which has headquarters in York and Milwaukee, hasn't been immune from the challenges with which its competitors are struggling.The company posted a $44.7 million profit during the fourth quarter, which includes the crucial holiday shopping season. That was down from $50.6 million in the previous year's fourth quarter.Comparable store sales, a key measure of a retailer's profitability, however, slipped 4.7 percent during the quarter that ended Jan. 28.And for fiscal year 2016, Bon-Ton Stores registered a net loss of $63.4 million. Comparable store sales fell 3.8 percent for the year.Since October, the company has announced the closing of six stores in Illinois, Ohio, Connecticut and in Frackville, Schuylkill County.Bufano, in a recent telephone interview, said shoppers feel a strong tie to Bon-Ton's regional department store names. The company has no plan to get rid of those names as Macy's did when it dropped names like Kaufmann's in Pittsburgh, Rich's in Atlanta and Burdines in Florida in favor of the Macy's brand.Opening more Continue Reading

Best Buy moving to Christiana Fashion Center

One of the worst-kept secrets in Delaware retail was finally revealed this week, but with a slight twist shoppers may not have seen coming.Best Buy confirmed Monday that it plans to open a new store in the Christiana Fashion Center this summer.That likely comes as no surprise to eagle-eyed shoppers.After all, the shopping center first added the tell-tale Best Buy façade to one of its vacant storefronts around Christmas.But few may have guessed that the new location would replace Best Buy’s existing anchor store at the Center Point Plaza II shopping center about 2 miles to the north.“The size of the new location is the big reason for the move,” Best Buy spokeswoman Carly Charlson said. “It’s going to allow us to give our Christiana customers a much better shopping experience than our current location.”That seemed to come as something of shock to Capano Management Co., which owns the Center Point Plaza II shopping center off Churchmans Road.“I really could not comment,” said Madison Rogers, director of commercial leasing for Capano Management. “Best Buy has a lease in place and we’ve received no official notification from them about that.”Charlson said the Christiana Fashion Center lease was only signed very recently. She declined to comment about Best Buy’s lease with Capano Management.The Minnesota-based consumer electronics retailer is now slated to open its new Christiana Fashion Center location in a nearly 46,000-square-foot storefront next to DSW Shoes. An exact opening date has not been set, Charlson said.Best Buy has occupied a 30,000-square foot space at the Center Pointe Plaza II shopping center off Churchmans Road (Del. 58) since 2007.The store currently employs about 120 workers, all of whom will be making the move to the new location, Charlson said.The retailer plans to hire additional workers at its new store, in part to help staff the in-store vendor and product shops Continue Reading