A Midwestern retailer that sells a range of categories such as apparel, footwear, farm supplies, outdoor goods for camping, boating, fishing and hunting, power tools and even firearms is closing up shop at all 25 of its locations, hosting a chainwide liquidation sale.
Despite its limited presence, Stock+Field, an outdoor retailer that catered to enthusiasts of the rural lifestyle, is offering price cuts on products from top brands in the outdoor apparel and footwear industries. Available brands include Under Armour, Wolverine, Wrangler, Lee, Justin Boots, Dickies, Cherokee, Carhartt and Oakley, among others.
Seeing these big-name brands offered at last-call prices is likely to get the attention of local shoppers before Stock+Field liquidates and closes down brick and mortar. But the closure of the stores illustrates a major issue many of these brands have faced not only since the start of the pandemic, but in the years prior as more retailers went bankrupt—their trust in wholesale is waning.
Under Armour, in particular, is looking to leave as many as 3,000 wholesale locations in North America by 2022 in an effort to better control over its product. And Wolverine Worldwide has goals to bring its owned digital sales to $500 million in 2021, with senior vice president and chief financial officer Mike Stornan telling Sourcing Journal in November, “We just don’t have the luxury of relying on anybody but ourselves to control that destiny going forward.”
And while Wrangler and Lee parent Kontoor Brands continued to invest in its digital wholesale channels, which were up 68 percent in the third quarter, overall wholesale growth totals haven’t been as great. While total wholesale channels represent 85 percent of Kontoor’s revenue, U.S. wholesale revenue increased only 3 percent, while international wholesale revenue actually decreased 34 percent. Meanwhile, in the same quarter, Wrangler and Lee saw direct sales on their websites grow 44 percent and 40 percent, respectively.
As for Stock+Field, its liquidation is being overseen by a joint venture of financial services firms Tiger Capital Group and B. Riley Retail Solutions. The going-out-of-business sales will take place across stores in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin.
“Midwesterners are well aware of Stock+Field’s robust selections of virtually anything you could need for work and hobbies associated with the rural lifestyle,” said Michael McGrail, chief operating officer of Tiger Capital Group. “We anticipate that Stock+Field’s highly desirable inventory will liquidate very quickly.
Founded in 1964 as Big R Stores before changing its name to Stock+Field in 2019, the retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Jan. 10 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Minnesota.
The liquidation discounts will only be offered in stores and not on the company website, which shows products but doesn’t currently give shoppers the option to buy them. Stock+Field’s “Order Online/Pickup In-Store” program has been discontinued.
“The sales coincide with a major resurgence of interest in many of the categories for which Stock+Field is well known,” said Scott Carpenter, CEO of B. Riley Retail Solutions in a statement. “In part because of behavioral shifts caused by the pandemic, we’re seeing strong consumer demand in sporting goods, lawn and garden, pets, and home and outdoor living. Stock+Field also carries diverse SKUs ranging from automotive, toys and apparel, to footwear, tools and hardware. This is inventory with enduring utility and value.”
Gift cards and “Ag Plus” Rebate Points from the company’s rewards program will be honored until February 8.