Lord & Taylor is closing its 104-year-old Fifth Avenue flagship store
Photo courtesy of Lord & Taylor
Lord & Taylor’s iconic New York City flagship store will close its doors next year, after occupying the Fifth Avenue building for 104 years. In an attempt to keep afloat last year, Hudson’s Bay, owner of the department store, sold the 676,000-square-foot building for $850 million to WeWork, who planned to make the landmark its new global headquarters.
While Lord & Taylor was left with roughly 150,000 square feet of space at 424 Fifth Avenue, the company struggled to maintain profitability after the turnover of the building to WeWork. Including the iconic flagship, the company will also close as many as 10 Lord & Taylor stores total (h/t Bloomberg). In a first-quarter report, Hudson’s Bay said: “Exiting this iconic space reflects Lord & Taylor’s increasing focus on its digital opportunity and HBC’s commitment to improving profitability.”
Last April, property executives were considering building an office and residential tower on top of the 11-story department store to recover from some losses. Instead, Hudson’s Bay sold the Italian Renaissance building in October to WeWork, who invested $500 million into the company as part of the deal.
Like other brick-and-mortar retailers, Hudson’s Bay has been affected by the rise of e-commerce and online retail companies like Amazon. The company’s CEO, Helena Foulkes, announced last week a partnership with Walmart.com, where the flagship can now be found. Foulkes wrote that the company “will take advantage of having a smaller footprint to rethink the model and focus on our digital opportunities.”