You know a company is special when its name becomes a verb.
This is the situation with Amazon.
The world of retail was "Amazoned" over the past decade and the carnage still continues. This year saw more store closings than took place in 2018. The list is going to keep growing.
Sears and KMart are going to see another 96 stores. We are seeing another 51 Sears and 45 KMart stores closing by February.
It is a sad situation. Sears is one of America's household brands. They were the original in "online" shopping with the Sears catalog. Unfortunately, the company did not change with the times.
Like much of the retail world, the company was caught completely off guard by the switch to online shopping. Thus far, online accounts for roughly 10% of total sales. That number is expected to grow by that same amount over the next decade.
The retail sector is a prime example of where technology caught an entire industry off guard. Even Wal-Mart found itself trailing although it made the commitment in 2015 to spend the money to tech the company out. Four years later, the investment is starting to pay dividends. Wal-Mart is working at implementing robots and automated checkout.
Yesterday I wrote about how the copier/printer industry are caught off guard. After working in that industry for twenty years, I can tell you how most have no clue. There are so many who believe that paper usage is holding strong.
Today, in response to the reported Xerox interest in taking over HP, I found this article that states how things are changing and paper is on its way out.
It is baffling how people can miss what is obvious. Unfortunately, people are not trained to look for disruption and are conditioned to believe things will not change rapidly. In this era, that is problematic. We are in an era where change is very rapid, causing most industries to be in the firing line.
These industries will not be the last ones confronted with this scenario. I hypothesize that most are going to face themselves in similar situations. Most companies, unfortunately, are ill-equipped to make radical changes. Instead, they will continue on the same path looking for the magic bullet to somehow turn things around only to realize, after it is too late, that things are done.
History is going to keep repeating itself as the carnage spreads across many different industries.
In the meantime, we can just continue to watch the decline of the physical shopping world.
For a full list of Sears and KMart store closing, check out this article.
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