Fourteen retailers expanding in 2021

Marianne Wilson
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Not all retailers are downsizing their physical assets in the wake of the pandemic. Far from it.

So far this year, retailers in the U.S. have announced 3,199 store openings and 2,548 closures, according to Coresight Research (per CNBC). In 2019, retailers announced 4,548 openings, up from 3,747 in 2018. The good news: To date in 2021, openings are already tracking to top each year prior.  

Here are 14 retailers opening stores in 2020 — and beyond. 

Aldi: The German discount grocer is adding 100 U.S. stores in 2021, with the locations focused on Arizona, Florida, California and the Northeast.

American Eagle Outfitters: The apparel retailer continues to focus on its intimates brand, Aerie, expanding it from about 350 stores to approximately 400 locations by the end of this year. It expects to have 500 to 600 Aerie stores in 2023.

Burlington Stores: The off-pricer, which ended the year with 761 stores nationwide, expanded its long-term store count potential to 2,000 stores, up from its previous target of 1,000 stores It expects to open 100 new locations in its current fiscal year.

Citi Trends: The value retailer, which specializes in apparel, accessories and home goods primarily for African American and Latinx customers, expects to open at least 30 stores and remodel 30 locations this year. With 585 stores in 33 states, Citi Trends plans to open at least 100 new stores and remodel at least 150 locations by the end of 2023.

Dollar General: The discounter's plans for its current fiscal year include opening 1,050 stores, remodeling 1,750 sites and relocating 100 stores. Looking further out, Dollar General sees the opportunity to roughly double its store count, which stood at 17,177 locations at the end of January. 

Dollar Tree: The discounter plans to open 600 stores and renovate 1,250 Family Dollar locations this year, with the openings consisting of 400 Dollar Tree stores and 200 Family Dollar stores.

Fabletics: The activewear fashion brand will open 24 stores across the nation in 2021, expanding its brick-and-mortar presence to 74 U.S. locations by year-end.

Five Below: The value tween and teen retailer remains one of the few specialty retailers that is not pulling back on brick-and-mortar growth. Five Below plans to open 170 to 180 new stores in 2021, up from 120 last year, and will enter two new states — Utah and New Mexico — as its footprint expands to 40 states. The company ended the year with more than 1, 050 stores.

Lidl: Lidl US is revving up its expansion along the East Coast. The German discount grocer plans to open 50 new stores by the end of 2021, with locations in Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Virginia.

Ross Stores: The off-pricer will open approximately 60 new stores — 40 Ross Dress for Less and 20 dd’s Discounts locations — during fiscal 2021. Long-term, the retailer remains confident that Ross can grow to 2,400 stores (up from its current 1,866 location) and dd's Discounts to 600 stores. 

Sephora: In the largest store expansion plan in its 21-year history in the United States, the global beauty giant will open more than 60 freestanding stores and 200 shop-in-shop locations in Kohl’s stores this year

Sprouts Farmers Market: The organic grocer will open some 20 stores this year, including 10 in the Sunshine State.

Target: The discounter recently announced it is accelerating new store openings, opening 30 to 40 stores annually. It also expects to ramp up its store remodel program this year and complete approximately 150 in time for the holiday season. It plans to remodel more than 200 stores a year beginning in 2022. 

Ulta Beauty: The beauty giant’s plans for this year include 40 new stores and 21 remodels or relocations.