California Specialty Retailer Ken Cranes to Close
Citing a “steep, relentless decline in same-store sales activity,” the 62-year-old Southern California retail fixture Ken Cranes announced today that it will cease operations within 60 days.
Ken Cranes, which reduced its store count to six from 10 in January, will begin inventory liquidation in its Torrance, Hawthorne, Encino, Pasadena, West L.A. and Westminster locations immediately.
The family-run business, which built its reputation on customer service excellence and was often used by manufacturers as a market launchpad for new technologies and product categories on the West Coast, experienced its best sales in 2006, growing that year by more than 40 percent, but in more recent times, Ken Cranes was “powerfully affected by the nation’s unusually severe and continuing economic downturn,” said a company statement. In April 2008, Ken Cranes made what it termed aggressive across-the-board cuts, but found that by early this year it had to close locations across Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside counties, and consolidate operations in several areas. “Sales volume continued to drop while financing and factoring options became extremely scarce,” the statement said.