June 07, 2022
Wayfair, an online furniture and home goods retailer based in Boston, Massachusetts, is opening a brick-and-mortar storefront at the King of Prussia Mall.
The e-commerce company is taking over the more than 100,000 square feet vacated by JC Penney in 2017. It plans to add a cafe with indoor and outdoor seating, as well as a rooftop deck with a bar, Upper Merion Township Supervisor Greg Waks announced in a Facebook post.
Wayfair has previously tested out in-person retail in 2019, when it opened four temporary pop-up shops around the country. One of the locations was inside the King of Prussia Mall, which featured a rotating list of inventory and in-store delivery.
Simon Property Group, which owns the mall, considered several options for the space after JC Penney's closure. One of the project ideas included developing it into a mixed-use property with offices, a hotel and and an outdoor recreation area, but the proposal faced significant backlash from the community, the Philadelphia Business Journal reported.
Construction on the new Wayfair location will start "in the near future" and includes internal remodeling, changes to the façade and new landscaping outside of the store, Waks said. While no exact opening date has been announced, it is expected to be sometime in 2023 or 2024.
Last year, Wayfair announced its plans to open three retail stores in Massachusetts. The company opened a location for its AllModern furniture brand last month in Lynnfield and will open two more in the fall – another AllModern store in Dedham and one for its Joss & Main brand in Burlington.
The company intends to continue expanding its retail footprint with larger format stores for its Perigold and flagship Wayfair brands.
Wayfair was founded in 2002 and operates offices and warehouses throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. The company saw rapid growth during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, when most furniture and home goods outlets were closed, Yahoo! Finance reported.
However, the company's stock price has fallen by more than 75% since last November. The entire home goods sector has suffered since the end of last year as consumer demand has declined and isn't expected to make a comeback soon, Forbes reports.
Wayfair did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.