New England retailer Benny's to close all 31 stores

East Wareham location set to shutter by end of 2017
By Matthew Bernat | Sep 09, 2017
Photo by: Matthew Bernat Benny's officials announced Friday that all 31 stores in the chain, including the East Wareham location, will close by the end of this year.

Benny’s, a family-owned southern New England retail chain known for low prices and its distinctive red facade, will shutter all 31 stores by the end of this year.

The decision affects the East Wareham store, located at 3066 Cranberry Highway.

When reached for comment, a manager at the store said: “We’re not allowed to talk to anybody about that.”

Company officials made the announcement Friday, citing challenges they face from online retailers.

“The retail landscape has changed dramatically – especially for ‘brick and mortar’ businesses. The decision to retire was strongly influenced by this changing face of retailing,” the company said in a statement posted on its Facebook page.

Comments from Benny’s Vice President Arnold Bromberg echoed that sentiment.

“We take great pride in what our retail stores have meant to our employees and loyal customers for so long. But it is simply time,” said Bromberg in a statement. He added that industry changes make it “nearly impossible for small, family-owned chains like ours to reasonably compete moving forward.”

Founded in 1924 by Benjamin Bromberg, the company’s first location was on Fountain Street in Providence and sold radio equipment and auto parts.

In the years since, its offerings have expanded to include toys, bicycles, beach gear, lawn and garden items and more.

Comments (9)
Posted by: George Dionne | Sep 09, 2017 19:37

I worked at Benny's back in high school. It was my first real job and I learned a lot about the retail business and hard work. Though Benny's couldn't keep up with Walmart's "falling prices" the one advantage they had over the rest was there was always someone there to help you, even if it wasn't their department. Everyone knew everyone's department to a degree. You didn't have to go half way around the store to find someone either. Sorry to see them go.

Posted by: Andrea Smith | Sep 09, 2017 20:49

I worked there too after ever increasing health insurance costs sent me on a hunt for employment that offered generous health care benefits. Working there was a wonderful experience, I met so many good people: hard -working, caring co-workers that became good friends, and smiling customers that time and again remarked to me that they always knew they would find what they needed at Benny's. I am so sorry to see Benny's close, and I feel so badly that Benny's many employees will be seeing their positions with Benny's disappear.

Posted by: WWareham resident | Sep 10, 2017 07:52

What a shame to see these businesses not able to keep up with the giant retailers. Benny's was my go - to for certain things and George is right, everyone there was helpful all the time. Go to Home Depot and try to find someone to help, it's almost like the employees hide when a customer looks like they want to ask a question. I do wonder how Ocean State Job Lot competes and Benny's couldn't?

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 10, 2017 08:28

Fishing equipment, boat stuff, bicycles, hardware, household, etc.  They have everything.  The manager himself greets and asks what I need help finding.  Such a great store.  I remember going there when coming down here on vacation as a kid.  It was the place to get rafts and all that summer beach stuff.  What a bummer...

Posted by: Andrea Smith | Sep 10, 2017 10:52

wwareham resident - regarding Ocean State Job - they have over 100 stores as compared to Benny's 31, most with far greater square footage allowing them to carry a much larger variety of inventory and to offer items, because of the volume ordered from manufacturers, at lower prices then Benny's could afford to offer items.

Posted by: cranky pants | Sep 10, 2017 11:38

Bummer, not only for the employees but also because it's another business pulled away from East Wareham.

Posted by: Swifts_Sheriff | Sep 10, 2017 17:31

Town leaders must love this . Build up West Wareham with new flashy stores .  East Wareham falling apart and failing businesses and Welly Motels . Turn Benny's into a methadone clinic / Welfare office .Cranberry Highway should be renamed Rotten Cranberry Highway ..

Posted by: totellthetruth | Sep 10, 2017 21:18

I remember Bennys when it first came toWareham some 60 yrs. ago.It moved into the old Packard Garage just up the Street. Business was so good they bought their current location (the former location of Howard Johnsons).It was difficult to go into Bennys and not be greeted by someone who knew your name and you his/hers.How times change- Reember the old Onset 5and10. Rays Drug Store, in fact their were three drug stores in Onset Center.

Posted by: Swifts_Sheriff | Sep 11, 2017 07:43

To Tell , now there are many drug stores in Onset . Heck there are lots of them all over town ... Believe it or not some are even protected  lol

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