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A Popular Discount Grocery Chain Is Shuttering All of Its 371 Stores—Here's Why

The low-priced retailer will start selling off its merchandise and winding down operations.
FACT CHECKED BY Justine Goodman

Whether you're on the hunt for fantastic fresh produce, the best meats, or droolworthy bakery departments, America boasts a myriad of grocery stores that can meet your needs. However, shoppers in one part of the country will have one less place to score discount goods as a popular grocery chain plans to shutter all of its locations. 

99 Cents Only Stores—a regional retailer that sells discounted fresh produce, food, drinks, and other household items—announced on April 4 that it plans to wind down its business and close its 371 stores. It attributed the decision to persistent financial pressures like inflation and changing customer demand.

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"This was an extremely difficult decision and is not the outcome we expected or hoped to achieve," said interim CEO Mike Simoncic, who is stepping down, in a statement. "Unfortunately, the last several years have presented significant and lasting challenges in the retail environment, including the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, shifting consumer demand, rising levels of shrink, persistent inflationary pressures, and other macroeconomic headwinds, all of which have greatly hindered the Company's ability to operate. We deeply appreciate the dedicated employees, customers, partners, and communities who have collectively supported 99 Cents Only Stores for decades."

99 Cents Only Stores
Eric Glenn / Shutterstock

The move will officially mark the end of 99 Cents' run roughly 42 years after the brand's very first store opened in Los Angeles back in 1982. 99 Cents said it spent months exploring every alternative in the hopes of finding a way to stay in business. However, "the company ultimately determined that an orderly wind-down was necessary and the best way to maximize the value of 99 Cents Only Stores' assets," a press release explained.

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The chain's 371 locations are spread throughout California, Arizona, Nevada, and Texas. 99 Cents plans to start selling off all its merchandise and dispose of fixtures, furnishings, and equipment at its shops. It has appointed a restructuring officer to help move along the wind-down, while Hilco Real Estate is managing the sale of its real estate.

The company did not immediately respond to our queries for additional comment on when it expects to officially cease operations.

99 Cents isn't the only discount retailer that recently decided to shutter scores of stores. Dollar Tree recently announced that it planned to close a whopping 1,000 locations, including 600 Family Dollar Stores, over the next several years. The decision came as inflation continues to spur many budget-conscious consumers to pull back on spending at grocery stores, impacting retailers' profits.

Zoe Strozewski
Zoe Strozewski is a News Writer for Eat This, Not That! A Chicago native who now lives in New Jersey, she graduated from Kean University in 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Read more about Zoe
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