"It’s going to end up like Memorial Day or the Fourth of July or Labor Day, where it’s all about the sales"
November 9, 2011 10:42 AM Subscribe
“I feel terrible,” [Best Buy chief executive Brian] Dunn told attendees at a conference in San Francisco. “It will change some Thanksgiving plans for our employees. It certainly changes mine...We were going to be open at much more civilized hour, like 3 or 4 [AM].”Feeling pressure from a weak economy and escalating competition from rival retailers, stores like Best Buy are somewhat reluctantly planning to open stores at midnight on Thanksgiving evening. Traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year, Black Friday has become Black Midnight.
Best Buy, Target, Macy's, and Kohl's have already announced plans to open their stores at midnight after Thanksgiving. Last year Toys 'R' Us opened some stores at 10PM Thanksgiving Day night, while Disney Stores, Sears, Old Navy and The Gap will be open with limited hours on Thanksgiving Day itself.
The International Council on Shopping Centers estimates a "moderately healthy performance" during the holiday season, with sales rising 3% over last year to $250 billion. ShopperTrak estimates that 212 million people are expected to go shopping, spending $39 billion, an average of $365.34 per person not counting online purchases on Black Friday alone.
“Within the last decade, we’ve seen Black Friday morph from a leisurely midmorning venture around a handful of stores to a competitive free-for-all among retailers eager to nab those first holiday shoppers. Last year, it got even earlier,” says Ellen Davis, a National Retail Federation vice president. Nearly one of every four Black Friday shoppers was out at the stores by 4 a.m. last year, according to a survey by the retail group.
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