In a week when Bang & Olufsen announced its third consecutive quarterly loss, suggestions another respected hi-fi firm may also be feeling the pinch have arisen, with Bose announcing plans to close its entire retail store footprint in North America, Europe, Japan and Australia.
The news is disappointing for audiophiles who have been frequenting the audio store since its first shop opened in 1993 and devastating for the employees who are being let go, but Bose is just the latest victim of the shift from brick and mortar to online commerce that began back in the '90s. The company showcases its product lineup in these stores which ranges from noise-canceling headphones to smart speakers and bone conductive sunglasses that quietly play music to the wearer.
An obvious effect of the move to close over 100 retail stores would be retrenchment of employees.
"Originally, our retail stores gave people a way to experience, test, and talk to us about multi-component, CD and DVD-based home entertainment systems", said Colette Burke, Bose's vice president of global sales.
"At the time, it was a radical idea, but we focused on what our customers needed, and where they needed it - and we're doing the same thing now", Burke said. Over the years, they've set the standard for customer service.
The company will be shutting down a total of 119 stores in the coming months.
Bose will be offering outplacement assistance and severance to affected employees. 530 jobs will be lost. Additional details, including the number of employees affected, will remain private.
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This is not the first time that Bose has radically changed their marketing tactics, with the company stripping Australian retailers of several popular Bose products that drove consumers to retail stores.
Then it was the famous Criniti's restaurant chain's turn to enter into voluntary administration, with several of the 13 sites across the country set to close for good.
There are often similar demo areas at retailers like Best Buy, though Bose has plenty of competition to worry about in that environment, according to The Verge.
EB Games: Video game retailer closing at least 19 stores in "unprofitable" locations across the nation.
Later that month, Muscle Coach, a leading fitness company, was put into voluntary administration after a director received a devastating diagnosis and the company racked up debts of nearly $1 million.
Red Rooster: Closed seven Queensland stores in October 2019, leaving 100 staff without jobs.
Dimmeys: Discount retailer closed its doors for good after 166 years of trading.