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Disney Plots Retail Future as Stores Close En Masse

Reports of Disney store closures keep rolling in as the media and entertainment giant shifts its focus toward e-commerce.

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Reports of Disney store closures keep rolling in as the media and entertainment giant prepares to shutter its Mall of America and Raleigh, N.C. locations on May 19.

It’s the continuation of a plan that Disney announced back in March to close at least 60 locations in North America. A month later, the company said it would close nearly all of its stores, including all 18 locations in Canada.

Disney said it will turn its attention away from brick and mortar and toward e-commerce.

“While consumer behavior has shifted toward online shopping, the global pandemic has changed what consumers expect from a retailer,” says Stephanie Young, president of Disney’s Consumer Products Games and Publishing division, in a press release. “Over the past few years, we’ve been focused on meeting consumers where they are already spending their time, such as the expansion of Disney store shop-in-shops around the world. We now plan to create a more flexible, interconnected e-commerce experience that gives consumers easy access to unique, high-quality products across all our franchises.”

You didn’t need psychic prescience to see this one coming, but it’s no less heartbreaking for longtime fans of the Disney retail stores, who are voicing their sentiments on “Inside the Magic,” a Disney blog tracking the news.

ITM wonders:

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“Will this change bring more customers to buy online on shop Disney? Will Disney decide to lower their free shipping fee from $75 to a more reasonable charge now that Disney Stores are unavailable? And will Canadian Disney fans be able to shop for merchandise on a shopDisney.ca website? Only time will tell what will come of the future of Disney shopping.”

Read more at Inside the Magic.

Drawing on more than 120 years of history serving the retail design market, VMSD magazine provides retail professionals with the most up-to-date, innovative retail design ideas and industry news through its industry-leading magazine, website, social media channels and bulletins.

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