According to Fung Global Retail & Technology, during 2016, 2,139 stores opened in the U.S. and 1,674 closed. So far, 2017 has seen 3,262 announced store openings, and 5,321 announced closings (see Chart 1). This introduces the question: Will the closing of all these stores negatively impact the digital signage industry?
While a shrinking retail customer base is not helpful, I do not think that this will negatively impact the industry for two major reasons:
- Digital screens are sold into a lot of environments beyond what might be considered traditional retail, i.e., hospitality, banks, QSR and transportation to name a few.
- Store-based retailers recognize the importance of digitizing their stores with various technologies to both compete with online retailers and to enhance their stores.
 Note also that Global Market Insight, for example, in its research titled “Digital Signage Market Forecast, 2016 – 2023,” finds that the global digital signage market was over $15 billion in 2015, with a forecasted 5.2 percent annual growth rate from 2016 to 2023.
 In its 2016 Retail Technology Survey, Gartner found that 58 percent of the retailers surveyed were increasing their IT spending budgets versus 2015.