Bed Bath & Beyond overhauls strategy after closings, layoffs

Amid pandemic, retailer shuttered hundreds of stores, cut thousands of jobs

Bed, Bath & Beyond, forced to shutter stores and cut thousands of jobs as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, is mapping out a new strategy as it continues to try to "win back customers."

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The New Jersey-based company announced Wednesday that it would "deepen" its connections with five core customer segments as part of an overall "three-year growth strategy."

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BBBYBED BATH & BEYOND INC.21.64+0.85+4.11%

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In doing so, the company plans on fine-tuning its selection of products by offering a better assortment of low-priced merchandise while also improving its supply chain.

The struggling retailer is also further investing in its omnichannel shopping experience, wherein it plans to build on the recent launch of its Buy-Online-Pickup-In-Store (BOPIS), curbside pickup and same-day delivery services.

These options have become critical during the pandemic for retailers, with online sales continuing to climb as coronavirus and flu concerns keep more people out of stores.

People wear protective face masks outside Bed Bath & Beyond in New York City on July 12, 2020. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

As the holidays approach, COVID-19 is projected to drive online spending even more with Adobe Analytics estimating that spending will reach $189 billion, representing 33 percent growth compared to a year ago.

“The $189 billion in online sales we’re expecting would account for two years’ worth of growth in e-commerce this holiday season,” said John Copeland, who is vice president of marketing and customer insights at Adobe.

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For Bed, Bath & Beyond, these services have already helped "convert more than two million customers to shop more than one channel this year," the company said.

Mark J. Tritton, new Bed Bath & Beyond CEO. Photo: Bed Bath & Beyond

CEO Mark Tritton said that the company has "made tremendous progress this year to strengthen our financial position" and that this new three-year plan "further elevates the shopping experience, modernizes our operations," which is projected to increase cash flow and "strong and sustainable total shareholder return."

However, the transformation comes amid a rough stretch for the retailer.

The company announced earlier this summer it would be shuttering some 200 Bed, Bath & Beyond stores as part of the restructuring plan and that it would be cutting 2,800 jobs.

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Adding to its list of woes, its parent company, Bed Bath & Beyond Inc., also disclosed that it will be shedding some of its brands, including the Christmas Tree Shops, in an effort to "further increase its financial strength" amid the economic downturn.

However, the company had been suffering even prior to the pandemic.

Back in February, Tritton announced that the company would spend $1 billion this year reinvesting in stores, upgrading technology, and on debt reduction and share buybacks to turn the struggling chain around.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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