Well, it’s happened. Overstock.com has resurrected the name Bed Bath & Beyond and now does business under its namesake at the website BedBathAndBeyond.com. After buying the defunct company’s intellectual property (name and website), Overstock.com ditched their own name in the hope that consumers view them as a home goods retailer.
So, what’s it like to shop at the new BedBathAndBeyond.com? The site is a good mix of the beloved BB&B logo, colors, and coupons and Overstock’s notable Spin to Win discount and Everything Ships for Free gimmicks. There are also a huge number of categories to shop (even large appliances and exercise equipment!). According to Overstock, they’ve added over 600,000 products over the last few months, which you can browse and buy now. And, if you download and shop through the new Bed Bath & Beyond app you’ll get a 25% off coupon. While you can shop online, there are no Bed Bath & Beyond stores to visit and most likely won’t be any in the future.
Here’s how we got here:
After rounds of closures, mounting debt, and a failed attempt at securing funding, Bed Bath & Beyond filed for bankruptcy on April 24, 2023, and prepared to close all their stores for good on Sunday, July 30.
Everything was up to 90% off the weekend Bed Bath and Beyond stores closed their doors for the last time. As we said good bye to Bed Bath & Beyond, buybuy Baby was right on their heels with their own store closures.
1. Sales numbers have tanked for years and were getting worse.
Bed Bath & Beyond has been struggling for some time now. The company has faced intense competition from online retailers like Amazon as well as newer brick-and-mortar stores that offer similar products at lower prices.
The most recent quarterly sales report, shared Jan. 10, 2023, showed the biggest sales decline yet for Bed Bath & Beyond, with their net sales numbers at 33% under the previous year.
Company reports say that follows the last two quarters’ hefty declines of 26% and 23%. That makes the fiscal year decreases of about 7% in 2019, 2020, and 2021 look good by comparison.
And while holiday season numbers haven’t been released, Placer.ai reported that December 2022 foot traffic was down 26.5% compared to December 2021.
Those bad sales numbers mean big losses for the company — and snowballing debt. It’s a story we’ve read (and written) a bunch of times over the years for retailers like Pier 1, Kmart/Sears, and Olympia Sports.
2. Customers had a hard time finding products on the shelves.
The company’s financial problems have meant that Bed Bath & Beyond spent less on inventory — which meant that customers would often find empty shelves in some parts of the store and more popular items out of stock.
Bed Bath & Beyond says any money they made during the holiday season has been used to purchase more inventory in the new year. But analysts wondered if that was too little, too late.
3. Bed Bath & Beyond has been in a downward spiral of closing U.S. stores.
Bed Bath & Beyond had been closing stores at an increasing clip lately.
On Jan. 10, 2023, Bed Bath & Beyond announced that approximately 120 locations would be closing. Just three weeks later on Jan. 31, the company added 141 more stores to their list of closures, bringing the total number of stores closing to nearly 300 — much higher than the initial 56 stores that were announced for closure in September 2022. As of May 2020, there were almost 1,500 stores, but as of April 2023, that total number was closer to 700.
4. Bed Bath & Beyond just went through widespread layoffs, leaving fewer employees in the stores.
CNBC shared a recent company memo indicating that Bed Bath & Beyond has started a new round of layoffs that will reduce the number of employees “across our corporate, supply chain and store portfolio.”
The new layoffs aren’t entirely surprising; in August 2022 Bed Bath & Beyond said they would lay off about 20% of their workforce. It’s all in an effort to trim expenses by $80 million to $100 million.
But there’s concern that fewer employees make an already-maligned customer experience worse.
5. They shut down all operations in Canada first.
Bed Bath & Beyond’s operations in Canada — including both Bed Bath & Beyond and Buybuy Baby stores — went bankrupt first. The Canadian side of the business has lost a lot of money in the past, and this has affected the overall financial performance of the parent company.
As a result, the Canadian division has been granted protection by a court and is in the process of closing down all 54 Bed Bath & Beyond stores and 11 Buybuy Baby stores in that country.
6. Buybuy Baby and Harmon stores also started closing.
For the first time, Bed Bath & Beyond started closing some of their other stores — sister store chain buybuy Baby and Harmon health and beauty stores.
At one point, the company was planning to sell off or spin off buybuy Baby stores in order to raise money for the struggling Bed Bath & Beyond, but now the plan is to shut down all of the sister stores as well.