On Tuesday Target announced that it will close nine stores in the U.S. due to increased theft problems. Target will be closing these nine stores in four different states including three stores from the San Francisco Bay area and one from New York City’s neighborhood East Harlem. Violent incidents have increased by 120 percent against workers at Target.
The reason for closing stores in these areas is due to an increase in organized retail crimes and thefts that have compromised the safety of Target employees and customers. From 21st October these stores will shut their doors to the people including two stores in Seattle and three stores in Portland.
After closing these nine stores Target said a total of 150 stores combined will remain open in the market. These closures will affect their workers’ opportunity to transfer to different stores mentioned by Target. According to a Minneapolis retailer, the decision to close Target stores was quite difficult.
Target in their statement said, “We know that our stores serve an important role in their communities, but we can only be successful if the working and shopping environment is safe for all.”
Adding further Target said that they had invested heavily in planning action that will prevent theft in their stores. Target added more security workers, licking up merchandise, installing theft-deterrent tools, and using third-party guard assistance.
Target said that they also trained their security team members and store managers on methods that they employ to protect themselves during potential safety issues and on de-escalating safety issues. But even after so many methods they still faced “fundamental challenges” that led to the closing of these stores.
Also, the business performance of these stores was not able to defend themselves as well which led to the closure. Closing of these stores accounts for a drop in Target’s total number of stores operating in the U.S. Target has 1900 stores in the U.S. but the move highlights the challenges retailers face when tackling theft issues.