Bethany Clough

Family Dollar is closing up to 390 stores. What about Fresno, Valley stores?

FILE - This Aug. 19, 2014 photo shows the Family Dollar store in Ridgeland, Miss. Dollar Tree is closing up to 390 Family Dollar stores this year and rebranding about 200 others under the Dollar Tree name. The company closed 84 Family Dollar stores in the fourth quarter, 37 more than originally planned. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)
FILE - This Aug. 19, 2014 photo shows the Family Dollar store in Ridgeland, Miss. Dollar Tree is closing up to 390 Family Dollar stores this year and rebranding about 200 others under the Dollar Tree name. The company closed 84 Family Dollar stores in the fourth quarter, 37 more than originally planned. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File) AP

Family Dollar could close up to 390 stores around the U.S. this year.

On the other hand, it’s also planning to renovate 1,000 other stores, begin selling alcohol at 1,000 stores and switch 200 stores to Dollar Tree stores.

Just what will happen at stores in the Fresno area?

We don’t know yet. The company has not released a list of stores where changes are planned.

Family Dollar stores started flooding the central San Joaquin Valley in 2012. There are 11 stores in Fresno, and at least 32 between Madera and Delano. Unlike other chain stores, Family Dollar and competing discount stores didn’t shy away from opening locations in small and rural places like Pixley and Avenal.

Family Dollar is owned by Dollar Tree. It bought Family Dollar for $8.5 billion in 2014.

The company shared news of the closures and renovations during its fourth-quarter earnings release Wednesday. Dollar Tree’s same-store sales (sales at stores open at least a year that are common measure of performance) overall grew 3.2 percent. But Family Dollar’s same-store sales grew 1.4 percent.

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Despite the growth, Family Dollar is underperforming, said one analyst, Neil Saunders, of GlobalData Retail, in an email.

“As we have said before, much more corrective action is needed to revive Family Dollar’s fortunes,” he said.

The company already closed 84 underperforming Family Dollar stores in the fourth quarter of 2018 – 37 more than it had originally planned for the year.

It is hoping to strike deals with landlords for reduced rent at shopping centers. But if that doesn’t happen, Family Dollar will close up to 390 stores. It typically closes about 75 stores a year.

In 2019, the company plans to open 550 new stores, including 200 Family Dollar stores. As of February 2, 2019, the Company operated 7,001 Dollar Tree stores and 8,236 Family Dollar stores.

The new and renovated Family Dollar stores have a new concept that includes selling $1 merchandise from the Dollar Tree brand. The change has led to an uptick in sales.

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Bethany Clough covers restaurants and retail for The Fresno Bee. A reporter for 20 years, she now works to answer readers’ questions about business openings, closings and other business news. She has a degree in journalism from Syracuse University and her last name is pronounced Cluff.


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