Sunday, January 18, 2009

Snapshot Economy: Circuit City + Borders Express

CIRCUIT CITY accomplished something in liquidation that it wasn't able to do on most days: keep the parking lot full and have customers lining up at the registers to buy.

This particular store in Springfield, IL, had never been as successful as the other electronics retail giant in town, Best Buy. So it came as a surprise when this particular was skipped in November 2008, when the company decided to close 155 stores.

Now, all 567 stores are in the process of liquidating stock.

Discounts in the original 155 were not tremendously generous, Cnet reported. Sales among the remaining stores were similar.

The deepest discounts were the music section, with 30 percent off. The more expensive the item, the less the discount. Big-ticket electronics, such as digital cameras and BR players were 10 percent off.

That didn't stop people from buying, at this store and others. In fact, LA Times reported it sparked a "black Saturday."

NOT THE ONLY liquidation in town, the Borders Express book store had discounts of its own. All items were 40 percent off, and people were also buying.

Other recent losses from the mall include Linnens N Things and World Market. A theater (Kerasotes-owned) and a an arcade (a Namco Cybertainment-owned Aladdin's Castle franchise) closed earlier this year. Both had been tenants since the mall opened in 1977. Read on...