Five Below to Open 170 to 180 Stores in 2021
Five Below plans to open 170 to 180 stores across the country during the next nine months, according to Chain Store Age. The company currently operates 1,051 locations nationwide, and it isn’t letting the pandemic stop its national expansion. The extreme-value tween and teen chain remains one of the few specialty retailers that hasn't pulled in the reins on brick-and-mortar growth. Five Below’s net sales for holiday 2020 jumped 21.1 percent year-over-year to $722.3 million. Comparable sales increased by 10.1 percent.
Total Retail's Take: As we've seen throughout the COVID19 pandemic, value chains and discount stores have increased in popularity among consumers, many of whom have been financially stressed during the health crisis. Five Below is responding to consumer demand for discount goods by continuing to expand its physical footprint across the country. Although facing the same store closures and limitations as every other brick-and-mortar retailer due to COVID regulations, the company still pushed forward with its expansion plans in 2020 due to strong performance. The decision to continue this strategy into 2021 has been boosted by Five Below's strongest holiday sales increase since 2011, even amidst a global pandemic.
According to President and CEO Joel Anderson, consumers have responded well to Five Below's Wow product expansion to offer select items priced above the chain’s signature $5.00 cutoff, mixed in with its extreme-value goods. "These strong results illustrate the broad appeal of our Wow offering at amazing values as well as the inherent flexibility of our model and merchandise offering," Anderson stated in a company press release. Five Below's in-store success is a model for other retailers that are considering shifting physical and digital store roles going forward.
Kristina Stidham is the digital content director at Total Retail and sister brands Women in Retail Leadership Circle and Women Leading Travel & Hospitality at NAPCO Media. She is passionate about digital media and handles video, podcast and virtual event production for all brands. You can often find her at WIRLC, TR, WLT&H or industry events with her camera and podcasting equipment—or at home on Zoom—recording interviews with thought leaders and business executives.
Kristina holds a B.A. in Media Studies and Production from the Temple University Klein College of Media and Communication in Philadelphia. Go Owls! When she's not in the office, she loves to go on long walks, sing around the house, hangout with her family and two pet guinea pigs, and travel to new places.