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Dillard’s Inc. will reopen 55 of its stores Tuesday that had been temporarily closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Little Rock department store chain will reopen stores in Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah, according to a Dillard’s news release.
“Management is monitoring all markets for easing of government restrictions and will re-open stores as soon as possible,” the release said.
Meanwhile, the Simon Property Group, which owns McCain Mall in North Little Rock, said it will begin reopening 49 of its malls and outlet centers starting today, according to CNBC. CNBC also reported that the Simon group will be providing free CDC-approved masks and hand sanitizing packets to shoppers who ask for them.
In a statement, McCain Mall managers outlined “enhanced safety protocols” for all tenants.
“The health, safety and well-being of the community we serve will always be our highest priority, and we have developed a thorough and detailed set of protocols highlighting the exceptional measures we’ve implemented for shoppers, retailers and employees as we reopen,” Lisa Meyer, the mall’s general manager, said.
“We also recognize that individuals and families in our community are suffering significant hardship as a result of both COVID-19 and the economic shutdown, and we believe that reopening our property will not only help people get back to work during these challenging times, but also enable us to use our property to further support charitable initiatives.”
Major mall tenants like Macy’s Inc. also announced plans to gradually reopen stores on Monday.
On Thursday, Wedbush Securities Inc., a financial services and investment firm in Los Angeles, kept its neutral rating on Dillard’s (NYSE: DDS).
Dillard’s weak fourth quarter was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Wedbush said.
Dillard’s reported net income of $111 million on revenue of $6.3 billion for its fiscal year that ended Feb. 1. In the previous fiscal year, Dillard’s had $170 million in net income on revenue of $6.5 billion. And same-store sales fell 1% in the most recent fiscal year, compared to an increase 2% the previous year.
“Despite an unprecedented hike in markdown rates, and drop in average price, inventories continue to increase at historical levels,” Jen Redding, an analyst for Wedbush said in the report. “We see Dillard’s as likely to continue to struggle relative to sophisticated peers, as retailers post-COVID-19 initially compete in a new world characterized by historically unparalleled supply.”
Dillard’s temporarily shut about 200 of its 285 locations on March 27. Dillard’s had announced on March 17 a plan to reduce store hours, a move that brought criticism after other retailers announced they were temporarily closing to slow the spread of the virus.