CompUSA Will Close All Stores After Holidays

Last Tuesday, based on industry-insider information provided “on background,” we told you that this could be coming, and here it is: CompUSA announced Friday it will close all its stores after the Christmas shopping season. So to all you doubters, we offer a rousing, “nyah, nyah.” Rumor of the impending shutdown was also given to The Boy Genius Report via a leaked internal Best Buy memo.

Sales will be held over the holidays to try to offload inventory. Wonder if the deals will be just as crappy as when CompUSA did the liquidation dance earlier this year.

CompUSA to close all of its 103 stores [AP] (Thanks to Doug!)
(Photo: Tyler Durden’s Imaginary Friend)

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. reykjavik says:

    surprise surprise. The internet has no shoplifters, it has no expensive real estate to rent and it has no tax. Eventually Best Buy and Circuit City will follow suit as the consumer gets more tech savvy and does ALL their purchases online.

  2. joopiter says:

    Soooo…what happens if someone has an extended service contract with CompUSA? My roommate has one that goes through September.

  3. geognerd says:

    Just don’t expect really good deals at their liquidation sales. When the CompUSA closed near my office, a lot of the “good stuff” was snapped up quickly by people who didn’t know they could do better elsewhere. By the time I got there, the junk that was left was still overpriced or merely average.

  4. IanthePez says:

    Joopiter, I can find out for you about the service plans when I go back to work on Monday. Time to start the job hunt for me though. Don’t forget all of those who will be losing their jobs out there after the Holiday Season.

  5. joopiter says:

    @IanthePez: Thank you, Ianthepez. Good luck on the job hunt.

  6. homerjay says:

    @joopiter: They’re serviced by a 3rd party.

  7. karnag3 says:

    Haha, I work at a CompUSA as a tech and luckily, was able to get a new job before the closing. I found out about the closings literally as I was about to put in my two weeks notice.

  8. jrdnjstn78 says:

    @reykjavik:

    Doubt it. Not everyone wants to wait on a purchase to arrive in the mail and pay those high shipping fees, depending on what you buy though it can come out even on paying taxes or shipping fees. Then others don’t want to worry about if their order went through or if it will get canceled later, like so many orders did for BF shoppers.

    They have 2 CompUSA stores where I live, I’m going to check out what kind of crappy sales they’ll have. CompUSA should have gotten rid of those stupid rebate crap. They did do great at price matching though. I bought a Canon all-in-one printer and got them to do 2 price matches, I ended up saving about 100$ on the printer.

  9. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    I’ve never liked any CompUSA, and have been to several. Never one convenient, so I foolishly used to stop at one when I was near one in my travels.
    Never anything worth the bother, and the know-nothing-about-computer employees that seemed to populate the stores when I was there did not help.

  10. mph says:

    @karnag3:

    Haha? If you played your cards right you could have gotten severance AND a new job.

  11. meadandale says:

    I’m heartbroken…

    Last time I went into a CompUSA, I was looking to buy an ipod and had cash in hand. I stood at the counter for 30 minutes watching sales clerk after sales clerk walk by without so much as a look in my direction. Two isles away, a sales clerk and THE MANAGER spent 20 minutes helping someone find a printer cartridge while I sat there with $400 burning a hole in my pocket.

    I finally left but not before having some words with the 2 people standing at the front customer service desk. And guess what? They weren’t even apologetic and didn’t care. I told them that I was going to go somewhere where “they actually wanted my money”

    I’ve never been back to a CompUSA since.

    Good riddance

  12. XTC46 says:
  13. XTC46 says:

    @joopiter: The service plans are backed by a company called “technology assurance group” not compUSA. They also back circuit city’s and dozens of other plans. They will back them through the life of the plan even if compUSA goes away.

  14. Trai_Dep says:

    The lesson here, folks, is that IF you go the Bricks route, you better offer something better than what’s online. Plenty of retail tech places are doing gangbuster business. It’s the ones that don’t provide knowledgeable service, good prices and decent selection (r-e-s-p-e-c-t, in other words) that are dead men walking.

    Oh, and any apologies forthcoming from the Consumerist haters that one-line-slammed ‘em for predicting that CompUSA was going to fold? Yes, wishlish, half-beast, crnk, headon and ChrisPC24, I’m talking to you…

  15. jkaufman101 says:

    i’m surprised it took this long to close down the whole company. it was one of the worst-managed electronics store on the planet.

  16. sburnap42 says:

    @meadandale: Yeah, that’s the exact same reason I stopped going there. Nothing feels stupider than sitting at the cashier’s station, looking for someone to actually sell you something and not finding anyone…while seeing a sea of red shirts doing other things. You’d think they’d understand that in order to make a profit, you should make sure you actually have people that can take the customer’s money.

    Fry’s service might suck, but at least they are organized enough to take money for merchandise.

  17. spinachdip says:

    @reykjavik: I disagree with you on several points.

    For one, your comment sort of requires the assumption that online shoppers and offline shoppers are the same people, and that closing of the brick-and-mortar stores will simply move the customers online.

    The thing is, people like to touch and play before buying electronics. And the big boxes get much of their sales from the impulse buyers and quick walk-ins. Some people will always want to shop in person.

    More importantly, physical stores lend credibility to the websites. Think about it – how many major e-commerce sites don’t have physical stores? There’s Amazon, and… that’s about it.

  18. JustinAche says:

    I’m actually slightly upset. On one hand, I hate the customer service at CompUSA, mostly because they don’t know a damn thing about computers, but, it is pretty handy to stop by a store and pick up a cheap 100 rack of CD-Rs, or a fan, ect.

    I spent about $ 150 over a weeks time on extra parts on a PC I was building, and forgot to order the parts online. Best Buy nor Circuit City doesn’t carry them, and forget Radio Shack…I can’t think of one time in the past 10-15 years when I’ve seen them even carry SOLDERING parts (at the local one near me, I’ve seen them at other ones)

  19. Bay State Darren says:

    Let me offer my congrats to this site for calling this one ahead of time, bravo.

    Can you tell me about anything in the future for the companies in my stock portfolio?

  20. BigNutty says:

    I don’t think I would buy an electronic item from a business that I know is not going to be there no matter how much I could save.

    God knows if the employees have raided the inventory taking out parts like memory and hard drives. It’s happened before at a local Sears before it closed down where I live.

  21. scoobydoo says:

    Let me be clear that I feel sorry for most of the employees that are losing their job this time of year. But lets also not forget the countless useless Compusa staff that wasted our time, gave bad advise and simply stopped caring about anything years ago.

    CompUSA was a disgrace of a store, it’s amazing they lasted this long. Between poorly managed inventory, massive amounts of theft, untrained staff, low staffing levels at most stores and poor prices they should have closed years ago.

    My only hope is that Bestbuy and Circuitcity don’t take it as a sign to raise prices.

    As for the liquidation deals; smart shoppers CAN find good stuff, but you need to keep looking and be sure to check, check and check again with anything you purchased. Anything with open seals should be avoided as the remaining staff are robbing the place blind as we speak. I witnessed a staff member put his own $50 cellphone in the box of a Nokia 8800 ($750 phone) after putting said phone in his own pocket of course. They take the whole “no returns” policy quite serious and as soon as you walk out the door you are on your own.

  22. BrianH says:

    Hey Hey Hey, Goodbye.

  23. mammalpants says:

    they had a chance to sign up for my Extended Customer Agreement, but their crappy service, repackaged-and-sold-as-new lies and repackaging fees led me to search for more pleasant shopping experiences.

    i am very happy to say that i predicted this day a few years ago. there is no way for a company like theirs to survive by treating us the way they have treated us.

    you reap what you sow, bitches! enjoy the flames of hell. i hope my used-but-sold-to-me as new Mac G4 is in the landfill down there with you all..flickering screen and OS crashing all the live long day. i wish you all herpes-filled buttholes and ties pulled tight against your weasly pencil necks.

  24. Grrrrrrr, now with two buns made of bacon. says:

    The last time I visited a CompUSA store, there were a group of five of us, and one of my friends wanted to check prices on SD cards, so we sat at the camera counter for over 20 minutes and nobody ever came over to help us. Finally, in desperation, somebody pulled one of the alarm wires off a camera, which you thought would have brought somebody running right over. The alarm sat there going off for 10 minutes and still no salesperson came, so finally we just left.

    With service like that, CompUSA won’t be missed.

  25. wishlish says:

    As one of the people who picked on Consumerist for posting the “unverified” rumor…you win. Consumerist 1, me 0. Nice job!

    I used to pick up great stuff on clearance from CompUSA in Mount Laurel. It wasn’t a bad store- I think it was one of the very few that valued its customers. When I moved from the area, I noticed that the local stores to me were much worse, and I don’t miss the chain.

  26. SarcasticDwarf says:

    @DemolitionMan: I suspect that of the tech stores still around Radio Shack will be next. They are in a similar position to CompUSA where they have not been able to develop a strong market niche.

  27. amoeba says:

    my dreams came true.

    customer service is the worse, the stores are a mess…not happy they are closing, but in a way they deserve it.

  28. CumaeanSibyl says:

    @dwayne_dibbly: Wow. At that point you really should’ve just started stealing things.

  29. bklynrickel says:

    you know, I always got a good deal at compusa. I can’t really explain it, but I was always able to return things when I needed to, and got great prices on things I bought. The last thing I purchased was a 19 inch lcd screen by acer for $199 minus a $70 rebate. once, I sent in for a rebate on a router, and subsequently returned the router but got the rebate anyway. after trying to return the rebate to compusa, they told me to keep it anyway.

    I don’t know about anybody else’s experience with compusa, but i’m gonna miss em. bye compusa. hello wallyworld. :(

  30. iamme99 says:

    @JRDNJSTN78:
    I just built a new computer from the ground up. The only think I brought non-mail order was the case (at Fry’s). I figured I save $400-600 from buying brick & mortar. Plus I had an unlimited selection, not restricted to the particular brands a local store carries.

    As to Comp-USA and as has been mentioned, the service was always poor whenever I went in there, the product selection was quite limited and unless you could get a special deal (which were usually sold out by the time I visited), the prices were never very good.

  31. headon says:

    @trai_dep: Ya got that wrong, I’m not a consumerist hater. Just the opposite. I had heard the rumor and was applauding the gonads it took to post an un-sourced rumor. I will accept your apology, but will remain amazed your inability to understand my comment.

  32. krazyivan says:

    You won’t have long to complain. That douch Roman Ross ran the company into the ground. A lot of hardworking people will be out of a job. You can shop at best buy and ask one of their experts. For all the great customers there were plenty of cry babies that wanted their asses kissed because they were spending ten bucks. Store 337 was the best and we will be missed. Darin Smith was right when he sain Carlos slim and a question, you dumb ass his two stooges were just pimps!!!

  33. Justinh6 says:

    The last time I was in there was several years back. All I needed was a ps2 to usb converter for a computer that had a bad ps2 port.

    They had a converter priced for 29 dollars, its a two cent piece of electronics.

    I went to walmart and bought a new keyboard with the converter for 12 dollars.

  34. ChrisPC24 says:

    @trai_dep: I didn’t deny the rumor. In fact, I said that eventually it was going to be right, and gave it 50/50 odds.

  35. z1rdarryl says:

    Before 2000 comp usa was a really good store.
    It was sad to watch it degrade into what its become.
    They started carrying dvd movies and tv sets.
    It was crazy.
    Its a shame for all the people loosing their jobs, but for me Comp USA died a long time ago

  36. woburn361 says:

    i was a victim of the first closing earlier this year. I am sooo glad I trusted my instincts and did not go to another store. To all of the employees about to loose their jobs, I am sorry..to those of you who moved to other stores who will go thru the horrible store closing experience AGAIN…I am so very sorry…May Roman Ross burn in hell because he knew this was going to happen from the moment he took the reigns…he helped put so many great people out of work, but in hindsight it was the best thing that’s happened to me…I have a stable job now that I enjoy. Sorry to all of you who were stupid enough to buy TAP on your items…you will have to call the stores or actually call corporate because nobody in the store level will care now to answer your questions, I knew we sure as hell didn’t care….

  37. pyloff says:

    I went to a store when they were closing this summer. I walked through the place looking at everything. I could not find a single good deal. Everything was 5-15% off which was still a shit price.

  38. woburn361 says:

    @Justinh6:

    and that’s the store’s fault how? Corporate sets the prices on what they sell..not the store..cables and items like that always have really high markup…buy them online like all smart people

  39. mike1731 says:

    I work across from a CompUSA in Kansas, and really it hasn’t been all that bad of a store. Just bought a HP laptop and was able to get 24 months no interest financing on it. Then when the computer went on sale three days later, they covered the difference in price, no questions asked. I feel bad for the employees, but agree that their pricing typically isn’t anything to write home about, particularly compared to Best Buy and the internet. I seem to recall the company was bought by an investor, and suspect it was a real estate play the whole time.

    Now, how much longer till Sears and KMart go belly up?

  40. meneye says:

    compusa never was very impressive, but I liked them better than Bestbuy or Circut city. Their little ‘liquidation’ sales were a joke though. 10% off something is not ‘clearance’!

  41. mac-phisto says:

    @spinachdip: well, there’s also dell. & look at the disaster that gateway ran into going brick & mortar.

    & there are tons of retailers – both online & catalog – that run a great majority of their business online with few retail stores (ll bean, cabela’s, lands end, to name a few).

    i do agree with your assessment of shoppers though. & i’ll add one more point about why people still choose to shop in person over online: you often find better deals. most online retailers are simply drop shippers & don’t get the same volume discounts that b&m stores get with their purchase contracts. as long as i can find what i’m looking for cheaper & i don’t have to wait to get it, guess which choice i’m going to make?

  42. AlphaWolf says:

    I had a decent CompUSA store, which closed not long ago. I still miss it actually, as I refuse to shop at Best Buy.

    Once they started to be all things to all people, Plasma TVs (why?), XM Radios, Energy Drinks…that was the start of the end in my opinion and when they started to struggle financially.

    The service department was where they could have really made some money (aka Geek Squad) but they did not change with the competition.

  43. Trai_Dep says:

    @headon & ChrisPC24, sorry if I was too hasty. Sorta rushed thru the original post and clicked names, guess I caught you guys up in the rush. :(

  44. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    @SarcasticDwarf:
    Nothing will kill off Radio Shack!
    They’re the cockroaches of retail!
    Seriously, there’s this group of people who know absolutely nothing about electronics or computers & they think that Radio Shack is the place to go.
    The stores are small, you can’t get lost in them like at Circuit City, Best Buy, Fry’s or Micro Center.
    Those people are actually scared of the big box stores.

  45. Kounji says:

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik:
    honestly that’s true, people still think its an awesome place to go, and a lot of times its in a convenient location. Though they really need to hurry up and find a niche quickly. CompUSA failed because they tried to sell televisions and dvds rather than focusing on being the premiere place to buy a computer and get amazing service. That’s what they needed to throw themselves into and they absolutely failed.

    Radio Shack, needs to figure out what it really wants to be in order to be successful. I personally think they should focus on being a fantastic audio supply store, or perhaps a cell phone retailer. Small consumer electronics seems to be their niche but they need to really get out there and press some sort of value to the consumer. I’m tired of seeing old companies die due to lack of vision.

  46. BugMeNot2 says:

    They are useful to have in town, as the other box stores don’t have things that they carry.
    But I guess they are the next Tower Records…
    I think Short-Circuit City is next…I was there recently, and the floor space was devoid of product for some reason, and devoid of customers…
    I hope this doesn’t mean Best Buy gets to become more of an ass…

  47. SandmanET says:

    peace late compusa ya always sucked

  48. HOP says:

    guess i’ve been lucky….no comp stores in my area….so i wont miss ‘em……

  49. radioshacklover says:

    @SarcasticDwarf: @Greasy Thumb Guzik:

    I have to second Greasy Tumb…Radio Shack isn’t going away anytime soon, there stock was soaring in the summer and now the market sucks, and they are still higher then last year (its been steady the last few months)…if you live in a city radio shack might seem like a joke, but if you goto the midwest… in mall country radio shack is at EVERY mall and is often the only decent electronics store there…now this may change as Best Buy continues it’s walmartization of the electronics world (a business plan that I don’t think is working for them)…I don’t think Radio shack’s business plan has changed much since the 70s or 80s…and well…there consistency works. I know I for one have gone in at least once or twice this year out of desperation for a AC/Dc adapter over paid by about 20 bucks for it….ugh…they are a good business, they know how to make money…plus they seem to always have one old timer at the store that knows his shit about small electronic repair.

  50. Blue says:

    I always thought i would smile the day that store folded. But sadly they have been replaced by even bigger sumbags.

  51. Consumerist Moderator - ACAMBRAS says:

    @mammalpants:
    Wow — bitter much?

  52. Yup, They aleady closed the store around here months ago in Danvers, MA, it just couldn’t compete with the best buy they put in. CompUSA had much higher prices so I’m not surprised or really upset for them.. They have th same product, they can sell it at the same price.

  53. mammalpants says:

    @Consumerist Moderator – ACAMBRAS:
    sorry about that! repressed memories!

  54. Buran says:

    @scoobydoo: Should have reported him.

  55. Rusted says:

    @reykjavik: Not so fast. Bricks and mortar, walk right in, buy, walk out. No shipping and handling costs and no waiting even a day. Best part, spend green dollars if one wants.

  56. dysthymia says:

    7 years late. Now is time to wait 10 more for Best buy. and 25 to that at least 30% of computers users know something about computers to buy less crap and use more efficiently what they have.

    It is a generational thing, I know. but at the same time I cant wait for this terrible stores to die and a new generation of retail stores come out of the ashes where the customer gets not a sale guy to do his job, but a true tech support guy that will give you free advice if that is the case. something like when you go to the hardware store and they tell you how to replace the rubber band in the sink instead of telling you and selling you a complete new sink.

    shame on you retail stores, shame on us retarded computer users that we dont care to learn and teach.

    mmmm, what the hell is in my coffee today?

  57. goodkitty says:

    @reykjavik: Actually, being an online store means you have the same shady characters, only instead of shoplifting you have to deal with stolen credit cards and fraudulent chargebacks. On top of that, everyone expects you to have the absolute rock-bottom price on everything because, hey, you don’t have a physical store, so you don’t need employees and warehousing and distributor markups and electricity and software costs and etc…. ;)

    CompUSA was so horrible. I still remember walking in there to buy a firewire cable ($55), walking right out, and buying one online for $5 an hour later. Even their latest ‘liquidation’ sales, as mentioned previously, were hardly even on par with say, a regular “Best Buy” sale.

    I’m still extremely baffled that nobody has figured out how to sell computer hardware locally without a 100% markup.

  58. zibby says:

    Everything still top-dollar in the one closest me as of Friday.

  59. nutrigm says:

    That’s what you get for doing ZERO TV advertisements and having an outrageous return policy (deduct 15% of opened package!!!) Their out-of-business sales isn’t really a sale. They don’t care to liquidate their merchandise anyways since they can sell all their stuff via the web. It’ll all just be moved to the giant warehouse in Missouri or someplace. Best of luck compusa, used to like that store before I discovered newegg.

  60. kretara says:

    While I also dislike CompUSA, I am sad that the store in Little Rock is closing. It is one of the few decent CompUSA’s that I have been to.

    The staff is fairly knowledgeable and they are quick to answer your questions or help you with anything. The techs are decent. But most of all, the Apple selection is great and the Apple sales guys are fantastic.

  61. HeartBurnKid says:

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik: Dear “Bob”, I hope Radio Shack doesn’t close down. It’s the only place in this hellhole of a valley that I can find a decent soldering iron and cable-making components.

  62. CPC24 says:

    @nutrigm: Best Buy also does 15%. Actually, the CompUSA here only started the 15% fee about six months ago.

  63. iworkthere says:

    @krazyivan: Actually, the damage was done long before Roman took over the company. Larry Mondry pretty much ran this place into the ground when he was in charge. Roman made a valiant effort to get it turned around, but it was just too far gone for him to be successful. After 7 years of CompUSA hemorraging his money, I’m not at all surprised that Carlos Slim finally decided to sell and close us down.