FARMINGTON — Some of the retail landscape in Farmington will change this spring when OfficeMax closes its doors.
Signs have popped up announcing Kmart’s pending closure as well, but a company spokesman would not confirm what those notices and banners are stating.
The office supplies retailer is owned by Office Depot Inc., which stated in its annual report for 2019 that it expects to close 90 stores in 2020 and in 2021 as part of a company-wide cost reduction and business improvement program.
“Office Depot Inc. continues to optimize its retail footprint,” spokeswoman Shera Bishop said. “As a result, the company is closing its OfficeMax store No. 6477 located at 4901 E. Main St. in Farmington on Saturday, April 18. We will continue to serve our Farmington-area customers online at officedepot.com.”
The location opened in September 1998, according to The Daily Times archives.
The company stated in its annual report, filed Feb. 26 with the Securities and Exchange Commission, that it has been undergoing a “strategic business transformation” since 2017, with the objective to expand product offerings and grow beyond selling traditional office supplies.
Office Depot closed 54 stores in 2019 and had approximately 40,000 employees as of Jan. 25, according to the report.
Notices say Kmart to shutter after 45 years in Farmington
The closure of Kmart at 3000 E. Main St., along with the location in Hobbs, would end the nationwide retailer’s presence in New Mexico. But a spokesperson for the chain stayed silent about the Farmington store’s fate.
Larry Costello, spokesman for Transformco, the parent company that owns Kmart and Sears, declined to comment on Feb. 3 and did not confirm the Farmington location closure.
However, closure notices are posted on the building and at the entrance, and there are empty shelves and markdowns on items inside the store.
Transformco announced in a Nov. 7 company statement that it would close 96 Sears and Kmart stores in an attempt to streamline its operations.
The Sears location at Animas Valley Mall was on that list and ended operations in early February.
“We will continue to evaluate our Sears and Kmart footprint, consistent with our overall retail and service strategy,” Transformco said in the November statement.
Although the Farmington Kmart store was not on the list last year, USA TODAY reported on Feb. 6 that liquidation sales for dozens of Sears and Kmart stores continue into March and April.
Costello declined to comment on USA TODAY and he did not confirm the accuracy of a list for store closures the publication compiled.
Kmart – known for its “blue light special” – evolved from a five-and-dime store that Sebastian Spering Kresge opened in 1899 in Detroit.
The Farmington store opened on Oct. 10, 1974, according to The Daily Times archives.
Farmington chamber president optimistic about retail
Last year saw a record number of store closures announced by nationwide retailers due to falling sales and consumers turning to online for shopping needs.
Despite the shift in retail, Farmington Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Jamie Church views the city as continuing to serve shoppers with its retail establishments.
“I do remain optimistic about this area remaining strong as a retail hub,” she said.
Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. You can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at [email protected]
Support local journalism with a digital subscription to The Daily Times.