As the holiday season begins, groups of thieves have embarked on brazen shoplifting exploits in stores across the United States
Why it matters: Retail organized crime costs retailers an average of $ 700,000 per $ 1 billion in sales per year, according to National Retail Federation estimates, and businesses attribute store closures and declining profits to the scourge of shoplifting.
State of play: On Monday, a group of 20 thieves used a sledgehammer and an electric bike to crash into and steal the Nordstrom from The Grove, a luxury shopping mall in Los Angeles.
On Friday night, a group of thieves ransacked several stores in San Francisco’s Union Square shopping district, breaking into luxury stores including Louis Vuitton, Burberry and Bloomingdales, AP reported. On Saturday night, about 80 people looted and assaulted workers at a Nordstrom in Walnut Creek, a town about 25 miles northeast of San Francisco, per CBS SF Bay Area.
Organized shoplifting also affected other parts of northern California over the weekend, including Hayward and San Jose, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
More than a dozen thieves looted a Louis Vuitton store in Chicago last week, stealing more than $ 100,000 in merchandise, per CNN. Last month, Walgreens announced the closure of five San Francisco stores due to an increase in “organized retail crime,” the New York Times reported.
Best Buy on Tuesday accused the organized theft of being the cause of the decline in gross profit in the third quarter. The news hit the company’s stock price.
California Governor Gavin Newsom has pledged to tighten security measures to counter the rise in thefts, according to a press release from the governor’s office.
What They Say: “It’s traumatic for our associates and it’s unacceptable,” Best Buy CEO Corie Barry said of the rise in organized crime on a call with analysts Tuesday, according to CNN.
California Governor Gavin Newsom addressed the recent spate of thefts Monday, Monday, saying he had “no sympathy” for “the people who crush and grab … who create havoc and terror in our streets “.
Go Further: Businesses Deploy Technology to Prevent Retail Crime
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