Audio equipment maker Bose is reportedly planning to shut its retail stores across North America, Europe, Australia, and Japan.

A total of 119 stores will be closed due to the ‘dramatic shift to online shopping’, the company stated in an email to The Verge.

The closing process will be carried out in the coming months.

Bose Global Sales vice-president Colette Burke was quoted by The Verge as saying that: “Originally, our retail stores gave people a way to experience, test, and talk to us about multi-component, CD and DVD-based home entertainment systems.

“At the time, it was a radical idea, but we focused on what our customers needed, and where they needed it, and we’re doing the same thing now.

“It’s still difficult, because the decision impacts some of our amazing store teams who make us proud every day. They take care of every person who walks through our doors, whether that’s helping with a problem, giving expert advice, or just letting someone take a break and listen to great music.”

‎Headquartered in Framingham, Bose launched its first store in the US in 1993.

Bose noted that its stores in other parts of the world will continue to operate. These, along with approximately 130 retail stores located in Greater China and the United Arab Emirates, India, Southeast Asia, and South Korea, will remain open.

The company has not disclosed further details, including the number of employees affected.