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Nordstrom Sets New Growth Path By Adding 22 Discount Stores

Nordstrom is plotting new outposts of its growing off-price Rack department stores amid a decline in the growth of its legacy name brand.

A Nordstrom Rack in Staten Island, New York

The retailer opened 19 new Nordstrom Rack locations in 2023, 11 of them during the final quarter, according to the company’s latest earnings report. 

Now the company plans to open 22 new locations, CoStar reported. On an earnings call Tuesday, executives said that figure includes six Rack stores across California and two each in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio and Texas. In addition, Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, New York and Tennessee will each add a location in 2024.

Nordstrom Rack generates more than 40% of new customers for the company, CEO Erik Nordstrom said in explaining the move to boost its roster of discount stores. Nordstrom also said the retailer plans to maximize the chain's e-commerce potential.

“Expanding our network of stores brings our omnichannel services closer to the customer, giving them more reasons and opportunities to engage with us,” he said during the call.

The company has 258 Rack locations in the U.S. and 93 Nordstrom stores. 

Nordstrom executives said net sales of the Rack brand increased 14.6% for the quarter ending Feb. 3 compared to the same period last year, a bright point for the company, which has struggled as its more upscale concept sales fell 3%.

Nordstrom's net earnings were $134M, a $111M decline from the year ended Jan. 28, 2023.

The firm isn't the only struggling legacy retailer. Macy’s just announced that it will close 150 stores, including its flagship store in San Francisco. 

Nordstrom executives said the retailer will also expand customer access via a relaunch of The new website will offer an online marketplace option with brand partners.

“We aim to deliver top-line Rack growth led by stores and supported by enhanced digital capabilities in 2024,” Nordstrom said on the earnings call.

Executives hope growing its base of customers at Rack stores also will mean more willingness to buy upscale brands from Nordstrom, citing statistics showing that about 25% of Rack customers shop at Nordstrom’s legacy site or stores within four years.