Caleres today announced it has begun a phased reopening of its Famous Footwear, Allen Edmonds, Naturalizer and Sam Edelman stores in a safe and systematic manner. Recently, the company began to reopen stores in areas where restrictions have been relaxed or lifted. It will progress with this approach over the next several weeks, and currently expects to have approximately 435 locations open by the end of May. Caleres is closely monitoring state and local restrictions and guidelines as it moves forward with the resumption of in-store operations across its entire store fleet. Caleres anticipates the vast majority of its stores to restart in-store service by the end of June.
“After careful and extensive planning, we are pleased to be taking this important step in the resumption of our store operations, which we view as a core component of the Caleres value proposition and an essential complement to our digital platform,” states Diane Sullivan, CEO, president and chairman. “With the reopening of our brick-and-mortar operations, we will again be able to offer our customers a full suite of shopping and delivery options, while providing them with the added convenience, service and immediacy that an in-person experience affords. Over the next several weeks, we look forward to welcoming back Associates and safely greeting our customers.”
Caleres’ top priority is the health and safety of its associates and its customers, and the company is taking numerous steps and following government guidelines to ensure a safe and comfortable in-store experience. That involves customizing its stores to ensure appropriate distancing and contactless transactions; equipping its associates to provide the most health-conscious service; and intensifying its already rigorous cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
In addition to leveraging its ecommerce platform, the company has also implemented a contactless curbside pickup option at approximately 170 locations nationwide, with the expectation that this service will be expanded to reach nearly 300 stores by next week. This service channel provides an important supplement to the strong ecommerce-related sales the company has experienced, particularly at Famous Footwear.
“It is critically important that we make every effort to ensure that our customers and associates feel confident, comfortable and safe as they return to a familiar shopping experience and work environment,” Sullivan says. “As we look toward the next round of store openings, we will take lessons from this first phase and adjust accordingly.”