Minneapolis-based Target Corporation announced Tuesday that it is closing nine stores in four different states, citing “theft and organized retail crime.”
The closures include locations in New York City, Seattle, San Francisco, and Portland, according to a press release.
“In this case, we cannot continue operating these stores because theft and organized retail crime are threatening the safety of our team and guests, and contributing to unsustainable business performance,” the company said.
Target said its efforts to deter crime at these locations have included the use of third-party security guards and locking cases, but these efforts have been unsuccessful.
“Despite our efforts, unfortunately, we continue to face fundamental challenges to operating these stores safely and successfully,” the press release said.
Target said earlier this year that it expects organized retail crime to contribute to a $500 million increase in lost merchandise this year, CNBC reported. The company said in its Tuesday press release that it is taking steps at many of its stores to combat this trend, including partnering with the Department of Homeland Security.
The top executives of several major retailers have spoken out about the issue, which was to blame for $112 billion in losses last year, Axios reported.
“The country has a retail theft problem,” Home Depot CFO Richard McPhail previously said.
In an effort to combat organized retail crime, federal legislation called the Inform Consumers Act took effect earlier this year and seeks to make it more difficult for criminals to sell stolen products on platforms like Amazon and eBay.