SAN DIEGO (TheStreet) -- After seeing RadioShack's (RSH) horrific fourth quarter results, including a challenged balance sheet and its last-ditch and latest survival plan, which includes shutting 1,100 stores, it dawned on me:
I live within seven minutes of two RadioShacks. Twenty-five minutes of seven. And probably an hour of dozens.
And therein lies its problem with its too-little-too-late attempt to turn things around: I don't go to RadioShack to buy milk or bread or get our prescriptions filled.
I don't need the convenience of a RadioShack.
And when I do go, with the notable exception of buying a burglar alarm battery that went on the fritz overnight -- something only they have -- I almost always walk out empty handed.
Much of what RadioShack used to stand for, the little esoteric electronics stuff you couldn't get anywhere else, can be (and should be) bought online. The economics of that stuff, as Radio Shack's increasingly death-spiral performance shows, simply doesn't pay. And they don't carry the stuff many of us want. And the sales help -- and this is a big generalization and no disrespect to the many hard working Radio Shack employees -- is hit-and-miss, at best.
Going to RadioShack is almost always a hollow experience.
Me: "Do you have XYZ?"
If I really want to feel and touch something that I may want to buy, there's still Best Buy (BBY), which isn't that much further away. And even Best Buy is struggling.
Reality: The concept of RadioShack is like a 1960s strip mall that hasn't been touched since the 1960s. I mean, even the name, "Radio" -- really? It's a model for a different time. Closing 20% of the stores is the start of what I believe may be a trend. Oddly, the fewer stores, the more Radio Shack will need to become a destination, like Best Buy -- and we already have Best Buy (for now!).