Best Buy Canada is following in the footsteps of its American parent company, announcing plans to shut down 15 big box locations.
The company is planning to close seven Best Buy-branded stores and eight Future Shop-branded big box locations. Best Buy Canada purchased the Future Shop locations in 2001.
Closing the locations will result in the loss of 900 jobs. Some of the fired employees may be able to receive new positions at Best Buy’s new mobile and tablet focused micro-store locations.
Best Buy operations 228 locations under the Best Buy and Future Shop brands; however, the closures will result in 10 percent of the company’s sales floor surface volume being wiped out.
In the year 2012, sales at Best Buy stores globally fell by 6.4 percent, and the sales were even worse in the final quarter ended in November when Canada and China sales plummeted by 8.2 percent.
Best Buy is hoping that its micro-stores — which sell unlocked cell phones, cellular contracts, and tablet devices — will result in increased revenues. In the past, Best Buy had relied on the sale of TVs, traditional computers, and other low-margin items. In recent years, the company has been seen as a “showroom” for Amazon.com and other online retailers, who can cut margins further by reducing the need for large sales teams and brick and mortar locations.
Best Buy has even added new categories of goods to its web-based selection. Those new items include sporting goods, outdoor items, and even lines of lotions.
Do you think brick and mortar Best Buy locations can survive well into the future, or will more big box retail location closed in 2013?