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The events of the last several weeks have changed our lives in ways that were previously unimaginable. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on businesses, the economy, and our communities. As a result of ongoing closures of American Eagle and Aerie stores across North America, we need to take steps to maintain financial stability and to ensure AEO Inc. emerges from this crisis healthy and strong—ready to serve our associates and our customers.
We are making some of the most agonizing decisions we have faced in AEO’s history. The most difficult of these actions involve our people. Beginning April 5, we will implement a temporary furlough of both full-time and part-time associates, which largely reflects the continued uncertainty around the duration of store closures.
Additionally, in order to ensure financial health, we have also taken the following proactive measures:
  • Reductions to operating expense, delayed merit increases for associates, a hiring freeze and other cost saving initiatives;
  • A suspension of our share repurchase program and deferred payment of the first quarter cash dividend;
  • Cuts to inventory receipts to align with lower demand due to store closures;
  • Reduced capital expenditures across stores, IT and other projects. The company will continue to invest in digital and DC capabilities to position us to better serve our online customers.
This is not business as usual. These are painful decisions, which were carefully and thoroughly considered. However, they are necessary for AEO to emerge from this difficult time in our history more nimble and ready for the future of retail, with the mental and physical health of our customers and associates top-of-mind in everything that we do.
We would like to thank our dedicated teams and loyal customers. Together we will get through these dark times and emerge stronger than ever before. Click here to learn more.

FAQ regarding COVID-19