Effective immediately, Fry’s Electronics has closed all of its stores across the US and shut down its website. This includes all 31 stores across the 9 states Fry’s could be found in.
This news comes as a sudden shock to the tech industry as Fry’s has been one of the longest-standing enthusiast-level tech stores in the USA for the past 36 years. Not only have they immediately closed all of their stores, but their website has also been effectively shut down and replaced with an official statement from the company.
News started to circulate late last night regarding the closure of Fry’s, but short of that this news has come as a complete shock to everyone. The writing has been on the wall for retail tech stores for some time now, but I don’t think anyone ever truly expected to see a company like Fry’s close their doors for good.
Assumedly, the ongoing hardware shortage had a tremendous impact on their decision to close their doors. Of course, retail has also slowed down across the world due to the current pandemic. Combined with online retail outlets like Amazon and Newegg taking more and more business every year.
However, troubling news isn’t necessarily new when it comes to Fry’s Electronics. Starting in 2019, reports of empty shelves started to circulate the web which caused customers to question Fry’s future in tech retail. It wasn’t just PC hardware they were short on, it was everything from security systems to home audio, gaming consoles, and drones.
What this says about the future of other mostly-physical retailers like Microcenter is uncertain. Now might be a good time to make a hard shift into digital sales.
The full statement from Fry’s reads as such:
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, Inc. (“Fry’s” or “Company”), 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. 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 regular operations and began the wind-down process on February 24, 2021. It is hoped that undertaking the wind-down through this orderly process will 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.
The Company is 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.
If you have questions, please contact us using the following email addresses:
For customers who have equipment currently being repaired, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, to arrange for return of your equipment.
For customers with items needing repair under a Performance Service Contract, please call (800) 811-1745.
For consignment vendors needing to pick up their consignment inventory at Fry’s locations, please email email@example.com.
Please understand if we are a bit slow to respond given the large volume of questions. The Company appreciates your patience and support through this process.