Fry’s Electronics today announced that after nearly 36 years it’s going out of business “as a result of changes in the retail industry and the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.” The company has already closed its 31 brick-and-mortar stores and replaced its online store with a letter to customers explaining how it plans to move forward.
The letter said Fry’s was implementing “an orderly wind down process” in an effort to “reduce costs, avoid additional liabilities, minimize the impact on our customers, vendors, landlords and associates, and maximize the value of the Company’s assets for its creditors and other stakeholders.” That process officially started today.
Fry’s also said it’s “in the process of reaching out to its customers with repairs and consignment vendors to help them understand what this will mean for them and the proposed next steps.” Customers and consignment vendors were given two email addresses and a phone number to use if they need to contact Fry’s before then.
It’s not clear what Fry’s plans to do with its remaining inventory. Retailers often try to sell as much of their stock as possible before shutting down, but if that’s what the company is doing, it’s happening behind the scenes. It’s kinda hard to sell your stuff if closing all your stores was the first step in your “orderly wind down process.”
Fry’s would have celebrated its 36th anniversary on May 17. The company said it was meant to be a “one-stop-shop and online resource for high-tech professionals across nine states.” Now it’s likely to be another footnote left in the shift to online shopping that was accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic forcing most people to stay home.