Future Shop stores closed across Canada, some to become Best Buy

Written By Unknown on Sabtu, 28 Maret 2015 | 22.39

Dozens of Future Shop stores have been closed across Canada, its parent company Best Buy Canada Ltd. announced Saturday.

The company said it was shutting down 66 Future Shop stores effective immediately. Meanwhile, another 65 stores will be closed for a week while they are converted to Best Buy stores.

"Currently, 80 per cent of our customers are within a 15-minute drive to a store and this won't change," Best Buy president and CEO Ron Wilson said in a written release.

The company said approximately 500 full-time and 1,000 part-time positions will be eliminated as a result of the consolidation.

"Any decisions that impact our people are never taken lightly; our first priority is to support them through this change. I want to express my appreciation to the employees who are leaving, for their contributions to Best Buy Canada."

News of the consolidation came as a shock to employees across the country on Saturday morning.

"We were called into a meeting [at 7 a.m.]," said one man employed as a computer sales representative at a Future Shop in Quebec City. "They did offer you choices ... but it was the package deal I took, so that's it."

A woman at the store said, "I'm keeping my job. I'm a customer service rep."

"This store is permanently closed," read signs posted for customers at affected stores. "We thank you for your support and look forward to serving you at your nearby Best buy store."

Future Shop Quebec City

A group of Future Shop employees hug each other outside their Quebec City store after the receiving the news. (CBC)

The notice awaited Janet Boudreau as she arrived at a Future Shop in Dartmouth on Saturday to shop for something she couldn't find at Best Buy.

"They didn't have what I wanted so I came to Future Shop, and I guess I'm not getting it here either," she told CBC News.

"It's sad. I liked Future Shop better. The people were very accommodating and I always found what I wanted. I'm disappointed."

Best Buy will honour Future Shop gift cards at any location across the country. Existing product orders, service appointments and warranties will continue to be honoured, and Future Shop purchases can be returned or exchanged at any Best Buy location.

Future Shop was purchased by Best Buy in 2001 for $580 million.

In a statement announcing the latest move, the Burnaby, B.C.-based retailer said it reviewed all locations for both retailers and found some were so close, they shared the same parking lot.

Two years ago, Best Buy spoke of how it had to adapt to a "changing retail landscape" where online stores were winning a greater share of the electronics market as it closed eight Future Shop and seven Best Buy big box stores across the country.

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