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RadioShack to close 1,100 'underperforming' US stores

Not long ago, rumor was that the company was be planning to close just 500 outlets as it forges ahead with a 21st-century makeover.

Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
RadioShack concept store
The new look of RadioShack, at its concept store on Broadway. RadioShack

RadioShack, once a wildly popular retail home for tech fanatics, has long since lost its luster and now the time has come to shutter some stores.

The company on Tuesday announced that it will close up to 1,100 stores across the US. RadioShack didn't say how long it will take to close the "underperforming" stores, butit seems to be set on moving as quickly as possible.

That RadioShack is closing 1,100 stores has surprised some who had been under the impression the company wouldn't act so aggressively. Last month, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people who claimed to have knowledge of its plans, that RadioShack would only close 500 stores.

After the closures, RadioShack's US stores will number about 3,100 to 3,200. The company will also have 900 dealer franchise locations, bringing its total presence across the United States to 4,000 locations.

RadioShack is in the midst of a rebranding intended to make its retail locations more friendly to today's consumers, rather than a hub for folks who need parts for their gadgetry. The company said that its remaining stores will have a new product assortment, and that in stores where it has already made the conversion, sales are up.

Still, RadioShack had a difficult fourth quarter of 2013, reporting $935.4 million in revenue, compared to $1.2 billion in the prior year. The company's annual losses also widened, jumping from $139.4 million in 2012 to $400.2 million in 2013.