Party City closing 45 stores, global helium shortage affects balloon sales

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Party City will close 45 stores this year in light of a global helium shortage. Party City says the global helium shortage has negatively impacted several of their balloon categories.

The company said in a press release that the closures will take place throughout the year.

“Each year, Party City typically closes 10-15 stores as a part of our prudent network optimization process and in response to ongoing consumer, market and economic changes that naturally arise in the business,” said CEO James Harrison. “This year, after careful consideration and evaluation of our store fleet, we’ve made the decision to close more stores than usual in order to help optimize our market level performance, focus on the most profitable locations and improve the overall health of our store portfolio.”

Part City has not yet released a list of the stores that will be affected. There are currently 870 locations.

Harrison said the company signed a letter of agreement for a new source of helium which will provide additional quantities of helium beginning this summer and spanning two and a half years.

“We believe this new source should substantially eliminate the shortfall we are experiencing at current allocation rates and improve our ability to return to a normal level of latex and metallic balloon sales,” said Harrison.

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