Fry’s Electronics has abruptly gone out of business, closing its 31 stores and replacing the content on its website with a simple one-page statement.
“After nearly 36 years in business as the one-stop-shop and online resource for high-tech professionals across nine states and 31 stores, Fry’s Electronics has made the difficult decision to shut down its operations and close its business permanently as a result of changes in the retail industry and the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” reads the statement. “The company will implement the shut down through an orderly wind down process that it believes will be in the best interests of the company, its creditors and other stakeholders.”
The company ceased all regular operations and began the wind-down process on Feb. 24. The statement also leaves instructions for customers who have equipment currently being repaired and consignment vendors, asking everyone to “understand if we are a bit slow to respond given the large volume of questions.”
Known for its quirky store themes and diverse assortment mix, Fry’s had recently been forced to move to a consignment model, according to The Verge, only paying suppliers that would accept payment after products had been sold. The result was empty shelves.
Fry’s was facing big challenges even prior to the pandemic, and had made a number of changes in an attempt to salvage the business, launching price-match campaigns and expanding its assortment mix to include toys, As Seen on TV gadget and even perfume.