FYE (retailer)

FYE (initialism for For Your Entertainment) is an American chain of entertainment retail stores in headquartered in Albany. Formerly owned by Trans World Entertainment, it began in 1993 and was expanded in 2001 after buying out and rebranding mall-based Camelot, Strawberries, Record Town and Coconuts stores. There are 206 locations as of May 2019. As of 2020, FYE is a unit of 2428392, Inc. and retained its headquarters.

FYE
IndustryRetail
Founded1993; 27 years ago (1993) (as f.y.e.)
Trumbull, Connecticut, US
HeadquartersAlbany, New York, US[1]
Number of locations
206 (2019)
ProductsCDs, vinyls, Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray/DVDs, electronics, video games, merchandise, candy
ParentTrans World Entertainment (1993–2020)
Sunrise Records (2020–present)
Websitefye.com
Logo until 2017

HistoryEdit

The first FYE store opened in 1993 at the Trumbull Mall (now Westfield Trumbull) in Trumbull, Connecticut.[2][3] A second one opened in 1995 at Eastview Mall in Victor, New York, and a third at Colonie Center in Colonie, New York in 1997.[4]

In 2001, Trans World unified its other mall-based stores under the "f.y.e." name after buying out Camelot Music. During that year, a major re-branding campaign made f.y.e. the brand name for all of Trans World Entertainment's mall-based retail stores as well as many freestanding locations, though some freestanding or strip mall stores continued to operate under regional brands like Planet Music. In 2016 the company changed the store and website branding to "FYE".

In 2006, Trans World began remodeling buildings that were former Coconut stores and Media Play outlets near Salt Lake City, Utah and Buffalo, New York into FYE superstores. In 2009 FYE closed over 100 locations[5] and 52 more in 2012.

2016 saw Trans World opening new FYE concept stores in multiple locations (such as the Rockaway Townsquare in Rockaway, New Jersey), with a new logo and look, a larger focus on pop-culture related items, an expanded selection of vinyl records and modern turntables, while the selection of Blu-rays, DVDs and CDs has been reduced.[6]

In March 2017, FYE founder and CEO Bob Higgins died. Higgins was responsible for the creating the FYE brand as well as maintaining its profitability and therefore its status as the last remaining music chain store.[7]

In November 2018, FYE's parent company was accused in federal court of deceiving customers by asking them to sign up for "free" and/or "loyalty" membership programs and magazine subscriptions while charging their credit and debit cards $11.99 per month until customers canceled the services. Another allegation was that customer information was shared with marketing company Synapse without customer consent.[8][9]

In 2018, 33 FYE stores were closed, and 35 more were scheduled to be closed before the end of Trans World's fiscal year on February 2, 2019.[10]

In 2020, Sunrise Records announced and later finalized their purchase of FYE from TWEC.[11][12]

NameplatesEdit

Though the majority of chains acquired by parent company Trans World Entertainment were completely converted into FYE stores, several chains have had a handful of stores kept open, though otherwise being stocked and operated the same as a traditional FYE except for the nameplate. These are:

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "FYE Corporate Office Headquarters". CorporateOfficeHeadquarters.com. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  2. ^ "A mass-market push for interactive CD-ROM". USA Today. 11 November 1993. Retrieved 19 August 2011.
  3. ^ Fitzpatrick, Eileen (5 July 1997). "Trans World at 25". Billboard. 109 (27): 68, 75, 76.
  4. ^ "New FYE store eyes Colonie site". bizjournals.com. 19 May 1997. Retrieved 19 August 2011.
  5. ^ Churchill, Chris (12 November 2009). "Trans World to close 125 FYE stores". Albany Times Union. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  6. ^ Holland, Tiffany. "Torrid, f.y.e. stores head to Valley View Mall". Roanoke Times. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  7. ^ "Bob Higgins, Pioneering Founder of Trans World and FYE, Dead at 75". Billboard. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  8. ^ Posses, Shayna. "FYE Must Face The Music For Bogus 'Free' Offers, Suit Says". Law360.com. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  9. ^ Honaker, Brigette (19 November 2018). "FYE Class Action Challenges Loyalty Program and Magazine Subscription Charges". TopClassActions.com. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  10. ^ DeMasi, Michael (November 2, 2018). "Trans World gets OK from creditor to close more FYE stores". Albany Business Review. BizJournals. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
  11. ^ Slingerland, Calum (23 January 2020). "Sunrise Records to Acquire U.S. Entertainment Chain FYE". Exclaim!*@#. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  12. ^ "Trans World closes $10 million FYE sale, turns attention to etailz". Albany Business Journel. Retrieved 2020-03-04.

External linksEdit