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Macy's is closing 150 stores nationwide as it seeks 'bold new chapter' with greater focus on luxury

The pivot will leave about 350 Macy's locations plus Bloomingdale's stores and the Bluemercury beauty and skin care brand.
The Macy's store in New York City
The Macy's store in New York City on Jan. 19.Michael M. Santiago / Getty Images file
/ Source: NBC News

Macy's plans to close approximately 150 stores nationwide as part of a massive reorganization that will see it pivot to a greater focus on luxury sales.

The retailer on Tuesday announced an initiative it's calling a "bold new chapter" that will involve shuttering "underproductive" locations, including approximately 50 by the end of the company's current fiscal year.

In an email, a Macy's spokesperson declined to comment about which specific stores are closing. In a statement obtained by NBC News on Tuesday, San Francisco Mayor London Breed said she had learned that Macy's 400,000 square-foot flagship location in the city's Union Square will eventually be part of the closures, though not in the initial round of 50.

The closures will leave approximately 350 Macy's locations, as well as Bloomingdale's and Bluemercury beauty and skin care stores.

The company sees those latter brands as its future: It said it plans to take advantage of its leadership position in the luxury market, where it said Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury have been "outperformers" within the Macy’s portfolio.

The company plans to build out 15 new Bloomingdale’s stores and at least 30 new Bluemercury stores, along with roughly 30 Bluemercury remodels, over the next three years.

“We are making the necessary moves to reinvigorate relationships with our customers through improved shopping experiences, relevant assortments and compelling value,” CEO Tony Spring said in a news release.

Macy's has been under pressure from investor activists seeking an outright sale of the company due to its decadelong underperformance, with Macy's real estate considered its most valuable asset.

However, Macy's recently rejected a takeover offer, saying it undervalued the firm.

Wall Street's immediate reaction to Tuesday's announcement was negative, with shares trading more than 2% lower in premarket action.