RadioShack to Become Clearance Store

Radio Shack January 2015

The demise of Tenleytown’s RadioShack has been slightly exaggerated. Recent social media posts claimed that the electronics retailer was closing its doors for good, but a quick trip to the store this morning confirmed that it will remain open – albeit with a few changes.

Passersby can be excused for thinking that RadioShack is on the way out. The prominent, yellow sign exclaiming “CLEARANCE BLOWOUT!” combined with a largely bare interior would seem to portend the end of this holdover from the 1980s, not to mention the parent company’s well publicized financial troubles – speculation is that RadioShack is close to filing for bankruptcy.

The store manager, however, took great umbrage when I inquired when the store would be closing for good. He emphatically stated that this RadioShack location would remain open and seemed miffed by rumors to the contrary.

Rather than closing, the manager informed me that the Tenleytown location will become a RadioShack clearance store. Clearance items from other RadioShack locations will be sent to our neighborhood to be sold at great discounts. The store is currently in transition to its new identity, hence the barren interior as old stock is moved out and new clearance items begin moving in.

The shift to a clearance outlet is part of the struggling company’s efforts to survive, and reflective of changes taking place at other retail locations across the country. RadioShack had planned to close more than 1,000 locations nationwide, but creditors blocked the closures. The clearance stores may be a stop gap effort to raise some cash while the retailer continues to seek approval for store closings.

That Radio hack has survived in Tenleytown at all is something of a miracle. A larger, better stocked, and more modern Best Buy looms right across Wisconsin Avenue. It’s too soon to tell if major discounts on clearance small electronics and accessories will draw in customers, but at first blush the change appears to be a Band-Aid on a dying relic from decades past.

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2 comments

  • I’d agree. I can’t see this as being anything other than a pre-cursor to a final closing. Radio Shack just didn’t move with the times, and there’s only so many people out there who still need a pair of rabbit ears for their tv.

  • Keeping Radio Shack as a clearance store doesn’t do anything to address the desire for more variety on the Tenleytown retail landscape. If in fact true, it would seem to take things in another direction.