Macy’s Layoffs and Store Closures

Macy’s Layoffs and Store Closures

Posted: March 22, 2024 | Updated: March 27, 2024

Macy’s is one of the most well-known department store chains in the US. It is currently making transformational changes, leading to restructuring and store closures due to tough competition from online competitors. The company plans to lay off its 2,350 employees, 3.5% of its total workforce, and close 5 stores. Currently, Macy’s operates 722 store locations and employs 94,570 individuals full and part-time, excluding seasonal hires. They also plan to close another 150 stores over the next few years.

These substantial decisions also relate to the potential hostile takeover situation created by Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital investor group, which advocates for Macy’s to go private through a $5.8 billion offer.

Key Takeaways
  • Macy’s Restructuring: One of the most well-known department store chains, Macy’s, is seemingly struggling for survival. It plans to undergo significant restructuring, including laying off 13% of its corporate workforce and closing five stores to compete against the market amid the “online” shifts.
  • Leadership Transition: Tony Spring, who has already taken over as the CEO after Jeff Gennette at Macy’s, is focused on providing the company with the tendencies of changing consumer demand.
  • Market Response: Macy’s strategic changes target emerging retail outlets, focusing more on digital shopping patterns and introducing new product lines to attract and satisfy the present generation of customers. This strategy also means revamping private label brands and expanding the brand outside the bounds of malls and complexes to smaller retail outlets across different locations.
  • Investor Pressure: The restructuring comes amid pressure from investors like Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital, who are eyeing a takeover of Macy’s. Despite challenges, Macy’s is trying to position itself for future success.

Major Restructuring at Macy’s: Workforce Reductions and Store Closures Amid Market Shifts

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Macy’s has recently informed its employees about a significant restructuring. This move means laying off 13% of its corporate workforce, amounting to approximately 2,350 jobs, roughly 3.5% of its total workforce, including employees at Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury subsidiaries. Additionally, five Macy’s stores out of more than 700 will be closed as part of this further plan. These closures are expected in the coming months with no expected delays. Macy’s stores, which will soon be closed, are as follows:

  • Simi Valley Town Center, Simi Valley, California
  • Bayfair Center, San Leandro, California
  • Kukui Grove Center, Lihue, Hawaii
  • Governor’s Square, Tallahassee, Florida
  • Ballston Quarter, Arlington, Virginia

The restructuring plan resulted from consumer research insights. It aims to simplify processes by eliminating “not so important” job roles and merging different teams to create one. These decisions improve the retailer’s competitiveness through cost-effective optimization and speedy decision-making processes.

Tony Spring – CEO role of Macy’sTony Spring, who assumed the CEO role of Macy’s last month, will step in for Jeff Gennette, who has been in that office since 2017 and will now retire. Tony Spring and Adrian Mitchell, Macy’s CFO and operating officer, are said to be the “backers” leading the research to help the company’s strategic direction.

Tony Spring – CEO role of Macy’s

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In an official statement, the company announced its intention to implement a new strategy in response to the evolving needs of consumers and the marketplace. As part of this initiative to streamline operations, they have made the challenging decision to reduce their workforce by 3.5%. Macy’s is currently undergoing a transformation aimed at modernizing the department store, which has been in operation for approximately 166 years, to better appeal to online shoppers, value-conscious consumers, and those exploring alternative retailers such as Amazon, Target, Shein, and T.J. Maxx.

As part of this initiative, Macy’s is revamping its private-label brands, expanding its presence beyond traditional mall settings with smaller – compact – standalone shops, and focusing on driving growth through its beauty chain, Bluemercury, and upscale department store, Bloomingdale’s. Last autumn, Macy’s announced plans to launch up to 30 smaller stores in strip malls within the next two years. Traditionally recognized for its prominent mall-based locations, Macy’s now targets suburban consumers who prefer outdoor shopping centers for everyday needs like groceries or clothing.

Loom of Hostile Takeover

In December, two private equity investors, Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital, presented an unsolicited offer to purchase Macy’s for $5.8 billion. This offer represented a 32% premium over Macy’s stock price. However, Macy’s rejected the offer earlier in January and expressed no interest in engaging with the potential buyers. They went as far as to refuse to provide additional financial information to Brigade and Arkhouse. In response, the two investors indicated their intention to persist with their buyout efforts, potentially bypassing the company’s board and appealing directly to shareholders.

Macy voiced doubts regarding Arkhouse and Brigade’s financial capability to execute the deal, particularly given that most of the funding would be in the form of debt added to Macy’s existing liabilities. The retail sector grapples with a shifting landscape as consumers increasingly opt for online shopping over traditional malls. This has resulted in the demise of stores like Toys “R” Us and Payless and tens of thousands of job losses.

Approximately 2,000 retail stores have closed their doors in the last eighteen months alone. Giants such as Walmart and Foot Locker have also joined the trend, closing down stores as part of cost-saving measures. This trend is expected to escalate significantly over the next five years.

Macy’s is implementing various strategies to enhance its valuation without a deal. This includes a workforce reduction and the closure of its five stores. These cost-cutting measures aim to facilitate the adoption of a new strategy tailored to evolving consumer demands and market trends. This strategic shift is prompted by the declining appeal of department stores and traditional retailers, as consumers increasingly favor online shopping.

However, Arkhouse Management and Brigade Capital may not be ready to give up and might increase their offer. They could also attract other potential buyers with different funding strategies, which could appeal more to Macy’s shareholders. Regardless of the outcome of these developments, 2024 is poised to be a pivotal year for Macy’s. Navigating the complexities of maintaining a successful spring fashion lineup and ensuring the freshness of its stores will pale in comparison to the potential challenges posed by leadership changes and downsizing.

About Macy’s, Inc.

Major Restructuring at Macy's: Workforce Reductions and Store Closures Amid Market Shifts

Image source

Macy’s, Inc. is a retail powerhouse operating across various channels, including stores, websites, and mobile apps throughout the United States. Macy’s offers various products ranging from clothing and accessories for men, women, and children to cosmetics, home furnishings, and other consumer goods. It serves customers under its brands Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury.

In addition to its presence in the U.S., Macy’s extends its reach through licensing agreements in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, and Al Zahra, Kuwait. Originally known as Federated Department Stores, Inc., the company rebranded as Macy’s, Inc. in June 2007. With roots tracing back to its establishment in 1830, Macy’s is headquartered in New York City.


Macy’s is navigating a transformative period marked by significant workforce reductions and store closures in the evolving retail landscape. These strategic adjustments, driven by consumer research insights, aim to streamline operations and bolster competitiveness in an increasingly online-focused market.

As the company prepares for leadership changes and potential buyout pressures, its focus remains on modernizing its offerings, expanding into new markets, and appealing to shifting consumer preferences. Despite the challenges posed by industry shifts, Macy’s continues to adapt and innovate, positioning itself for success in the years ahead.

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