The Children's Place to close 200 stores by the end of this year

Rheana Murray
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The Children's Place to close 200 stores by the end of this year

The Children's Place is the latest company to announce store closures as retailers across the country shift their focus to online sales.

The company, known for affordable kids' clothing, said it plans to close 200 stores this year and another 100 by the end of 2021.

It's not clear exactly which stores will shutter, but CEO Jane Elfers said in a news release that the company would be targeting "mall-based" locations.

Many of The Children's Place stores were already temporarily closed due to restrictions surrounding COVID-19, but Elfers said they plan to have the majority of their stores open by July 1. There's no word on when the subsequent closings will happen.

The news comes as many retailers weigh the value of their brick-and-mortar locations. J.C. Penney, Bed Bath & Beyond, Express, Bath & Body Works and others have all announced store closures this year.

Customers have increasingly been turning to the internet to shop. Elfers noted that online demand is up 300%.

"We believe that our strong digital foundation, coupled with the rapidly changing shopping patterns of our consumer, partly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our strong value proposition and our core, digital-savvy, millennial customer, will result in the continued acceleration of our digital revenue," Elfers said in the release.

The company currently has 920 stores in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.