Liquidation sales have started at Orchard Supply Hardware stores on the Central Coast and across California, Oregon and Florida following parent company Lowe’s decision to close the decades-old chain.
Lowe’s says its closing all 99 stores in the OSH chain, founded in San Jose, CA. in 1931, in order to focus on its core home improvement center business to better compete with Home Depot.
The closure of the Orchard Supply Hardware chain impacts more than 4,000 OSH employees.
“I’m looking for work”, said Santa Maria OSH employee Linda Kase, “it was a real shock, nobody was prepared for it, nobody is still prepared for it.”
Kase says she’ll seek job openings at the nearby Lowe’s Home Improvement Center in Santa Maria but is saddened by the loss of relationships she’s made with loyal OSH customers at the Santa Maria store.
“We have the best customers, the best”, Kase said.
Lowe’s says all Orchard Supply Hardware employees will be given priority placement for job openings at its home improvement centers and will receive job placement assistance as well as severance payments.
The liquidation sale at OSH stores will continue until the company expects to complete the full closure of the chain by the end of its current fiscal year in February, if not earlier.