By Greg Holden
Future Shop has closed the doors permanently to 66 outlets across Canada today, 65 other stores will be converted into Best Buy locations. Future Shop was purchased by Best Buy in 2001 for $580 million and have operated separately until today. The Chatham store is closed but will re-open in seven days as a Best Buy. Many locations are closing permanently. No numbers have been released on how many jobs have been lost.
Customers expressed their frustration and surprise this morning at the Chatham location. One customer who identified herself as a nurse needed her cell-phone repaired and was directed to London by an employee. Best Buy says they are consolidating operations.
In a press-release Best Buy said 1000 part-time and 500 full-time jobs have been lost. Some Best Buy stores and Future Shop stores shared the same parking lot and the company is attempting to eliminate duplicity. Best Buy President Ron Wilson said, “Currently, 80 per cent of our customers are within a 15 minute drive to a store and this won’t change. We will continue to have a strong store presence in all major markets in Canada.”