Home Goods Retailer Accused of Cutting AC

Retail behemoth Bed Bath & Beyond is being accused of turning off air conditioning in stores as a way to cut costs.

According to reporting from several outlets, Bank of America analysts are alleging that Bed Bath & Beyond has turned off the air conditioning in stores as a way to cut costs amid struggling profit losses. After visiting several stores, the analysts wrote in a report released Tuesday that the retailer appeared to be cutting back on things like air conditioning, employee hours, operating hours, and rewards programs — all in an effort to mitigate losses of revenue.

“From our store visits, we believe that Bed Bath & Beyond is trying to quickly trim expenses to align costs with [sales] declines,” the report said.

On Wednesday, Bed Bath & Beyond announced that CEO Mark Tritton would be leaving the company, after a lower-than-expected quarter, according to Yahoo Finance. The retailer has watched sales decline in recent years despite a short-lived stock surge in 2019. Losses have continued to mount as competition with e-commerce giants like Amazon and Walmart has increased. Shares are down about 66% year to date.

Tritton, who came to the retailer after a successful reign with Target, was hired in 2019 to lead the struggling company into recovery. However, the news of his departure, and interim replacement, Sue Gove, comes directly after Bed Bath & Beyond’s financial reports for the first quarter, which demonstrated a 25% drop in net sales.

Now, the company is being accused of cutting costs to make up for the losses.

Related: Bed Bath & Beyond Uncovers The Problem With Q1 Earnings Season

Bed Bath & Beyond told CNN that any changes to air conditioning levels in certain stores did not come from corporate.

“We’ve been contacted about this report, and to be clear, no Bed Bath & Beyond stores were directed to adjust their air conditioning and there have been no corporate policy changes in regard to utilities usage,” a Bed Bath & Beyond representative told CNN.

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