May 7, 2020 / 1:05 PM / 24 days ago

Kohl's to reopen 25% of stores as states lift lockdown restrictions

FILE PHOTO: The sign outside a Kohl's store is seen in Broomfield, Colorado February 27, 2014. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

(Reuters) - Kohl’s Corp (KSS.N) said on Thursday it plans to reopen a quarter of its stores by next week, as retailers start to get business going again in states where coronavirus-induced lockdown restrictions have eased.

The department store operator said stores in four U.S. states had already reopened earlier this week and outlets in 10 more states would open on Monday.

Cosmetics retailer Ulta Beauty (ULTA.O) also said it would reopen about 180 stores on Monday.

The companies join other retailers such as Macy’s Inc (M.N), Abercrombie & Fitch Co (ANF.N) and Gap Inc (GPS.N) that have also charted recovery paths from the bruising caused by the lockdown measures.

More than half of U.S. states are easing curbs on business activity in an effort to restart their economies, but health experts have warned lifting restrictions too quickly could spark a new wave of infections.

That threat means customers’ shopping experience will be greatly changed, with Kohl’s saying it would keep fitting rooms closed, reduce operating hours and encourage shoppers to maintain distance with one another.

Ulta said it would ask all shoppers to wear face coverings.

Reporting by Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel

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