The retailer Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. today announced plans to reopen approximately 600 stores across North America and expand curbside pickup services to a total of approximately 1,350 stores.
The moves include 50 of the company’s Christmas Tree Shops and Cost Plus World Market stores. The company said the expansion of its retailing activities will take place subject to state and local regulations and will be done by June 13.
Bed Bath & Beyond did not issue a list of the stores involved. The company has stores in Mount Vernon, Yonkers, Elmsford and Port Chester as well as Stamford. While Connecticut has started its reopening process, Westchester County is in New York’s Mid-Hudson Region, which has not yet met the state’s metrics to begin the first of the state’s four reopening phases.
The company said that it plans to bring back approximately 11,000 store employees from furlough as stores reopen to the public and services are expanded. It said it will continue to pay 100% of the cost of health care premiums for all furloughed employees who participate in the company’s health plan until further notice.
As of February, before the economic shutdown associated with efforts to control spread of the virus, the company had about 1,500 stores and 55,000 employees.
Mark Tritton, the company’s president and CEO, said, “Over recent weeks in the U.S., traffic to our Bed Bath & Beyond website and mobile app is up approximately 30% and digital sales have doubled. Our financial flexibility allows us to take this patient, market-by-market approach.”
Bed Bath & Beyond this week announced a $10 million plan to donate essential items to those affected by COVID-19.
“Whether it’s fresh sheets, pillows and towels for people in the hospital or nursing care, food and home items for those in need, or toys or essential infant supplies for children, we’re doing what we can to make it easy to feel at home for those most in need at this time,” Tritton said.