Zales plans to downsize considerably in 2009, but at least its doors are still open, unlike its competitors. (More about Zales Q1 2009 below.)
© 2009 Barbara Farfan
Last year Whitehall Jewelers filed bankruptcy and liquidated 373 stores. In the first quarter of 2009, two regional jewelry retailers, Robbins Bros. and Fortunoff filed for Chapter 11
Robbins Bros. plans to continue as the "world's largest engagement ring store" after selling four of its stores, but the sparkle is gone for Fortunoff, which will close its doors after 87 years of business and one big liquidation sale. Apparently diamonds are not high on the average retail recession
In the Q1 2009 Zale Corporation announced 245 employee job cuts
and 115 store closings
. When making the announcment, CEO Neal Goldberg said that "a culture of cost discipline and financial rigor is vital to Zale’s ongoing success."
If everything goes as planned, Zales will end 2009 with 2.052 stores.