For a while there in 2020 and into 2021, Bed Bath & Beyond looked to be hitting its stride in its turnaround plan led by former Target executive Mark Tritton.
The retailer, like others operating in the home goods sector, benefited from consumers spending more time in their homes, therefore causing a spike in demand for the category.
To capitalize on this and to help further differentiate itself, Bed Bath & Beyond laid out a plan that included introducing at least 10 private labels over an 18-month period as it shifted away from national brands. But as supply chain problems plagued the entire retail industry, that plan backfired on the retailer.
Out-of-stocks led Bed Bath & Beyond to lose millions of dollars in sales, and overall demand in the home category came down as consumers shifted spending to other areas.
Throughout the year, the distressed retailer continued to lose sales and market share and was even considered to be a bankruptcy risk among several firms.
All of this led to a C-suite shakeout, a strategy pivot and board refresh in hopes of finally turning the business around.
It’s been a busy year for Bed Bath & Beyond. Here’s a look at some of the biggest news coming out of the retailer in 2022.
Bed Bath & Beyond’s year in events
January 6, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond kicks off the year with a dismal earnings report: In the third quarter, the retailer’s net sales fall 28% year over year to $1.9 billion, while comparable sales fall 7%. The retailer’s net loss also swells by over $200 million to $276.4 million.
February 16, 2022
To build out its omnichannel strategy, the retailer appoints Mark Danzig as its senior vice president of creative and former Ikea exec Umesh Sripad as senior vice president of digital.
March 7, 2022
RC Ventures, the activist investment firm led by Chewy co-founder and GameStop Chairman Ryan Cohen, takes a 9.8% stake in Bed Bath & Beyond, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
In a letter criticizing the retailer’s strategy, Cohen pushes for changes, including selling off its BuyBuy Baby banner and exploring a sale of the entire company, among other things.
March 25, 2022
Just a few weeks after RC ventures disclosed taking a nearly 10% stake in the company, Bed Bath & Beyond strikes a deal with Ryan Cohen and RC Ventures. Through the deal, the retailer agrees to add three board directors of RC Ventures’ choosing, two of whom will join a new group aimed at “exploring alternatives to unlock greater value” from BuyBuy Baby.
April 6, 2022
Building on a partnership that began in 2021, Kroger and the home goods retailer launch an online offering that allows customers to shop for Bed Bath & Beyond and BuyBuy Baby goods on the grocer’s website.
April 13, 2022
Blaming out-of-stocks at its Bed Bath & Beyond banner, the retailer suffers from $175 million in lost sales during the fourth quarter. Net sales fall 22% year over year to $2.1 billion, while comps decline by 12%. The retailer swings to a loss during the period, reporting a net loss of $159 million from a profit of $9 million a year prior.
May 31, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond launches a new private label for the home dubbed Everhome, marking the retailer’s ninth owned brand introduced since it announced in 2020 a plan to debut 10 private labels.
June 23, 2022
The retailer introduces a new loyalty program called Welcome Rewards, offering savings and benefits to customers across all of its banners.
June 29, 2022
Just over two and a half years after stepping into the role, CEO Mark Tritton announces his exit from the company. Independent director Sue Gove is selected to succeed him in the interim. Chief Merchandising Officer Joe Hartsig also announces he is stepping down from his position, being replaced by Mara Sirhal.
At the same time, Bed Bath & Beyond reports that net sales in the first quarter fell by 25%, while comps declined 23%.
June 30, 2022
The retailer adds to its leadership with two appointments: Laura Crossen is named chief accounting officer and senior vice president of finance, and Susie Kim is named senior vice president of treasury and investor relations.
July 20, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond faces a downgrade to its corporate rating from Moody’s. Analysts with the ratings agency point to a steep decline in revenue and EBITDA and challenges around the retailer’s profitability.
August 17, 2022
A little over five months after taking a stake in the company, Ryan Cohen announces he will sell his shares in Bed Bath & Beyond. RC Ventures says it plans to sell all of its 9.5 million shares, representing about 11.8% of Bed Bath & Beyond’s outstanding shares.
August 18, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond hires Kirkland & Ellis, a law firm specializing in restructuring, to help the retailer with its debt, according to a Bloomberg report citing an anonymous source. That restructuring could include new loans and/or refinancing existing loans.
August 19, 2022
Some suppliers restrict or stop shipping goods to the retailer after it falls behind on payments, according to a Bloomberg report citing anonymous sources.
August 22, 2022
The retailer faces a downgrade to its credit rating from S&P Global Ratings, who cited “mounting challenges, including very poor sales performance, deteriorating liquidity, and looming maturities.” The firm’s outlook for the retailer at the time is negative, which reflects “the risk the company could default on its debt or pursue a restructuring in the coming 12 months if its turn-around efforts do not gain significant traction.”
August 23, 2022
The retailer finds a lender to help boost its cash, according to a Wall Street Journal report. JPMorgan Chase conducted a marketing process for the company as it sought out about $375 million.
August 31, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond announces a turnaround plan, which includes laying off about 20% of its corporate and supply chain staff, closing more than 150 stores and discontinuing three of its nine private labels as it pivots to more national brands.
The retailer also announces it secured $500 million in new financing, which includes a recently expanded $1.13 billion asset-backed revolving credit facility and a new $375 million “first-in-last-out” facility.
At the same time, Chief Operating Officer John Hartmann and Chief Stores Officer Gregg Melnick exit as the company eliminates these roles.
September 2, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond’s Chief Financial Officer Gustavo Arnal dies by suicide. Arnal became CFO in May 2020.
September 6, 2022
Laura Crossen, who has been with Bed Bath & Beyond for more than two decades, becomes interim chief financial officer.
September 15, 2022
The retailer releases a list of the first wave of store closures featuring over 50 locations slated to close. Affected stores are in more than 20 states, including Connecticut, New Jersey and Illinois.
September 29, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond reports second-quarter net sales fell 28% year over year to $1.4 billion, while comps declined 26%. The retailer’s operating loss grows to $346.2 million from $84.1 million last year, while net loss reaches $366.2 million from $73.2 million in the year-ago period.
On a call discussing Q2 earnings, CEO Sue Gove tells analysts the retailer is upgrading its mobile app, connecting its three banners together.
Gove also notes that Bed Bath & Beyond is making progress on its supplier payments highlighting that “working with our supplier partners remains an important focus area and I’m pleased to share that our payables are considerably healthier than in the prior quarter as evidenced on our balance sheet.”
October 18, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond announces a bond exchange offer as it looks to pay some of its debts. The offer includes buying back three groups of senior unsecured notes, including one due in 2024, and offering new notes, due in 2027, with varying terms and interest rates.
The announcement is met with a downgrade to its corporate credit rating from S&P Global Ratings, which called the offering exchange “distressed.”
October 26, 2022
After holding the role in the interim for nearly four months, Sue Gove is officially named Bed Bath & Beyond’s CEO.
October 28, 2022
Bed Bath & Beyond says it plans to issue additional shares of its common stock with a maximum aggregate offering amount of up to $150 million. The retailer will use the proceeds from the sale to rebalance its inventory and assortment, in addition to helping pay down its debt.
On the same day, Bed Bath & Beyond also reveals it is reviewing a data breach after a third party improperly accessed data, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The retailer says it “has no reason to believe” the compromised data contains sensitive or personal information or that the breach will have a “material impact” on the company.
November 1, 2022
After announcing a pivot away from private labels it pushed so heavily toward in the past, the company introduces a new owned brand, Mighty Goods, for its BuyBuy Baby banner. With prices starting at $2, the brand features baby and toddler essentials.
On the same day, Bed Bath & Beyond’s Chief Customer and Technology Officer, Rafeh Masood, announces he will resign from the company, effective Dec. 2.
November 10, 2022
The company taps former Burlington Stores Chief Marketing Officer Bart Sichel as its chief marketing and customer officer. Sichel is responsible for overseeing customer and marketing strategies across Harmon, BuyBuy Baby and Bed Bath & Beyond.
Bed Bath & Beyond promotes Scott Lindblom to chief technology and digital officer. Lindblom served as chief technology officer since September 2020, reporting briefly to Rafeh Masood.