While stay-at-home orders are being lifted and stores are starting to reopen, it may be too late to save a number of brick-and-mortar shops.
As many as 25,000 retail stores across the country could permanently shutter by the end of the year, according to new data, reported CNN.
The estimated closures are documented in a new report by Coresight Research, which also indicated this year has already seen 4000 stores close. The advisory firm believes a snowball effect will transpire leading closures to top last year’s record of over 9300 stores closing up shop.
"Retailers that were struggling to stay in business pre-crisis are unlikely to have the wherewithal to stay the course on the road to recovery," Coresight said in the report, according to the outlet.
In addition, more than 50% of the closures are expected to occur in stores that are located inside indoor malls.
While malls have been losing business to online shopping prior to the pandemic, the last three months have further exacerbated the retail trend.
The sobering news comes after several major retailers have previously announced their intent to close stores permanently.
Earlier this month, J.C. Penney announced it would close 154 stores across the country this summer as part of its restructuring process.
250 Victoria's Secret stores and 50 Bath & Body Works outlets will also be closing for good. The locations of those stores have not been released.
Other major retailers such as Neiman Marcus and J.Crew have also had to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection due to the decline in the economy in the aftermath of the spread of COVID-19.
Even Starbucks is not immune to the coronavirus downturn. On Wednesday, the coffee giant announced it was looking toward closing up to 400 locations over the next 18 months and expanding on "convenience-led formats" like drive-thru and curbside pickup options for consumers.