(Gray News) – LifeWay, a national Christian bookstore chain, is closing all of its stores this year in order to “focus on digital retail” the company announced in a blog post on Wednesday.
LlifeWay, which sells Bibles, Christian books and an assortment of other religious materials and services, said it would be closing all 170 of its brick-and-mortar stores sometime this year.
The company’s acting CEO, Brad Waggoner, said that, “While we had hoped to keep some stores open, current market projections show this is no longer a viable option.”
The outlet says it will continue to offer products and services at its website and through a customer service call center.
“LifeWay is fortunate to have a robust publishing, events and church services business,” Waggoner said. “Our retail strategy for the future will be a greater focus on digital channels, which are experiencing strong growth.”
Waggoner said the move to close stores was a “difficult one.” According to the company’s release, it “interacts with five times as many people through its digital environments as it does through LifeWay stores.”
It did not specify when stores would close, only saying that it will “vary depending on local circumstances.”
LifeWay currently has stores in 30 states.