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Business

Pier 1 Imports considers closing up to 145 stores

Status of Iowa venues unknown

Chairs and paper lanterns are on display at a Pier One Imports in Coralville. (The Gazette)
Chairs and paper lanterns are on display at a Pier One Imports in Coralville. (The Gazette)

Pier 1 Imports is the latest retailer to announce it is considering store closures following a disappointing financial report.

The Fort Worth, Texas-based company announced it might shutter up to 145 of its remaining stores if it is unable to boost sales, according to a Friday investor relations report.

The company closed 30 stores in fiscal 2019.

Spokeswoman Jennifer Engstrand Reeder said in an email to The Gazette on Friday that the retailer is “committed to having a substantial store presence” and that “decisions have yet to be made” regarding specific closures in Iowa or elsewhere.

The company stores in Coralville, Marion and Dubuque.

Pier 1 reported a loss of $68.8 million for its 2019 fiscal fourth quarter, during which it experienced a $412.5 million net loss in sales.

Interim CEO Cheryl Bachelder said in the report the sales figures were “disappointing” and a product of “execution issues” Pier 1 is working to correct.

Part of company’s action plan, she said, involves revamping the focus of its spring and summer merchandise while exiting some legacy inventory at the furniture and home decor store.

Pier 1 also announced this week that Deborah Rieger-Paganis, formerly director of consulting firm AlixPartners, will succeed Nancy Walsh as interim chief financial officer. The company’s former CEO Alasdair James stepped down in late December.

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News of Pier 1 Imports’ turmoil comes days after another retailer, Bed, Bath and Beyond, announced it, too, was considering significant store closures following a disappointing fiscal fourth quarter.

• Comments: (319) 398-8366; thomas.friestad@thegazette.com

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