Should we put area Radio Shacks on the endangered species list?

Earlier this month, the Fort Worth-based electronics retailer generated buzz by announcing it would close 1,100 of its underperforming U.S. stores as it reported a $191.4 million loss in the fourth quarter.

I called Radio Shack’s corporate office this week in an attempt to get news about the stores that operated in Galveston, League City, Texas City, La Marque and Kemah. Here’s the email I received Thursday:

“We are not releasing a store closing list at this time. However, Radio Shack will maintain market coverage as part of this plan, with more than 4,000 U.S. stores in the Radio Shack footprint. We will have information to share in the future.”

Industry analysts and observers blamed Radio Shack’s dated image and loss of market share to Best Buy and Amazon.com.

Radio Shack is working to modernize its image, even poking fun at itself in a Super Bowl Commercial that starred a cast of 1980s celebrities, including Hulk Hogan and Dee Snider of Twisted Sister.

As a teenager, I always liked a trip with my dad to Radio Shack. It’s where he bought me my first good stereo, speakers and headphones.

I shop the bigger boxes. But last month, I went into the Galveston shop and, in a twist, bought my dad a wireless speaker kit for his birthday.

I wondered why I didn't shop there more. I liked the personal service and didn’t have to wander around the store for long to get help or find exactly what I needed.

Are you a Radio Shack fan? What do you like about shopping at the store? Any predictions on which area stores might close?

(5) comments

Steve Fouga

I find myself buying wires and connectors from Radio Shack, televisions and computers from Best Buy.

It wouldn't surprise me if they closed the Seawall store.

SteveL
Steve Lamb

As a self described computer nerd, amateur radio operator, and electronics experimenter, I associate radio shack with a place to buy various parts and supplies for my projects. The problem is that is recent years, the people they employee have no clue what you are talking about when you go in and ask for a power supply, diode, or resistor. They can sell you all the batteries you can ever use, but that's about it. That's why I don't shop there anymore. I would much rather drive to EPO in Webster, where they do know what you are asking for, and even take an interest in whatever project you may be working on. I think Radio Shack would be best served if they were to try to get back to their roots as a hobbyists store, and quit trying to compete with Best Buy and the like.

sverige1
Lars Faltskog

My latest trip to the Seawall location, which was approximately 5 months ago, was not the best experience. They had a female employee who was curt and rushed me through a purchase (although store was not crowded). On top of that, she made assumptions that I didn't know the kind of product I was looking for when I indeed knew what I wanted. I was looking for a female couplet because I already had a male couplet to attach it to. She insisted I needed a male one, even though this was an unusual circumstance. A very trying interaction.

All of this was rather disillusioning because in the past I had been having nothing but good experiences for years there. Maybe that day was the "beginnning of the end" for their location there.

Carlos Ponce

Good observation, sverige! If you have a male couplet, you need a female couplet to attach to it. You almost sound like Phil Robertson.[innocent]

sverige1
Lars Faltskog

Chester Wanamaker and Jim Dixon from Newhart

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