Despite the controversy H&M has faced for the hoodie debacle, customers have increasingly been shopping online making the need for physical stores obsolete.
According to Bloomberg, the Sweden-based fashion giant plans to close 170 shops and open 390 new ones which would make it the biggest closure since 1998, nearly 20 years in the making. Essentially this means the clothing retailer will close 44 stores for every 100 it opens the site notes.
The store’s pace of growth will slow to 4.6 percent in 2018 versus an average of 12 percent between 1999 and 2017.
This means that H&M taking preventative measures and hiring a diversity leader will become more imperative as the company shifts its focus from in-store branding to mainly online.