After the Revolution the GUM was nationalised and continued to work as a department store until Josef Stalin turned it into office space in 1928 for the committee in charge of his first Five Year Plan. After the suicide of Stalin's wife Nadezhda in 1932, the GUM was used to display her body.
After reopening as a department store in 1953, the GUM became one of the few stores in the Soviet Union that was not plagued by shortages of consumer goods, and the queues to purchase anything were long, often extending all across Red Square.
At the end of the Soviet era, GUM was partially — and then fully — privatized, and passed through a number of owners. It ended up in the hands of the supermarket chain Perekryostok. In May 2005, a 50.25% interest was sold to Bosco di Ciliegi, a Russian luxury-goods distributor and boutique operator. As a private shopping mall, it was renamed in such a fashion that it could maintain its old abbreviation and still be called GUM. The first word "Gosudarstvennyj" has been replaced with "Glavnyj" (Rus. Главный) 'main', so that GUM is now an abbreviation for "Main Universal Store".
It is still open today, and is a popular tourist destination for those visiting Moscow. Many of the stores feature high-fashion brand names familiar in the west; locals refer to these as the "exhibitions of prices", the joke being that no one could afford to actually buy any of the items on display. As of 2005, there were approximately 200 stores.
There is a similar historic department store rivalling GUM by its size, elegance and opulent architecture. It is called Central Universal Store (Tsentralniy Universalniy Magazin, abbreviated as TsUM) and sprawls just east of the Bolshoi Theatre.