Lowe’s closing 31 Canadian properties, 20 stores in U.S. amid restructuring

Among the 27 stores set to close by the end of January are nine in Ontario, nine in Quebec, six in Newfoundland and Labrador, two in Alberta and one in British Columbia.

Lowe’s Companies Inc. is reducing its Canadian footprint by closing 31 properties across the country in a bid to streamline its business.

The home improvement company said Monday in addition to closing 27 stores, it will also shutter two regional support centres in Mississauga, Ont. and St. John’s, N.L., a truss plant in St. John’s, N.L. and a block plant in Kamloops, B.C. as part of a plan to focus instead on the most profitable parts of its business.

Among the 27 stores set to close by the end of January are nine in Ontario, nine in Quebec, six in Newfoundland and Labrador, two in Alberta and one in British Columbia.

Sylvain Prud’homme, chief executive of Lowe’s Canada, did not say how many employees would be affected by the closures, but said the changes will allow the company to improve collaboration between its banners to better serve customers.

“Everything will be done to ensure a smooth transition until the stores are closed, and Lowe’s Canada will support impacted employees, including by transferring eligible employees to other locations within our network whenever possible,” Prud’homme said in a statement.

In addition to the 31 locations the brand is closing in Canada, it will also axe 20 stores in the U.S.

The Canadian closures amount to a reduction of about three per cent of the brand’s total retail network square footage.

The company currently has 68 Lowe’s and 430 Rona stores in the country — part of its network of 2,390 home improvement locations across North America, including Reno-Depot, Dick’s Lumber, Contractor First and Ace locations it also owns.

Lowe’s Canadian business is based in Boucherville, Que. and has more than 630 corporate and independent affiliate dealer stores.

David Soberman, a University of Toronto professor specializing in marketing and retail, said Lowe’s 2016 acquisition of Rona Inc. in a deal valued at $3.2 billion. has likely fuelled some of the Canadian cuts.

“They probably had too many locations,” he said. “Now, this will mean people will have to drive a bit further to find a Lowe’s or a Rona store.”

He said the company has also been facing fierce competition from fellow home improvement businesses Home Depot Inc. and Canadian Tire Inc. and to some extent, Costco Wholesale Corp. and Walmart Inc., which are “extremely powerful” and stock some home and garden products.

E-commerce giants including Amazon Inc. have also posed a threat because of their efficiency, but Soberman said their impact on Lowe’s is limited because many construction and do-it-yourself products are bulky, heavy and cost more to ship — “not things that are suited to online retail.”

Related: Hero campaign raises $24,000 for Okanagan non-profits

Related: Sears files for bankruptcy amid plunging sales, massive debt

Companies in this story: (TSX:CTC)

Tara Deschamps, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unemployment surpasses historic high in Greater Victoria, tourism hit hard

Hospitality and tourism sectors hurting as pandemic continues

Victoria tattoo shops respond to sex assault allegations against male artists

Carne Tattoo and Painted Lotus Studios respond to allegations

Victoria seeks court order to enforce sheltering rules in Beacon Hill Park

People being asked to move out of environmentally sensitive areas of park

Mayor not in favour of low barrier housing at Oak Bay Lodge

Process is already in place to determine future of Oak Bay Lodge

Police watchdog reviewing Victoria police-involved crash

VicPD officer collided with another car in downtown intersection

VIDEO: Langford cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 7

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Would you get a vaccine for COVID-19 when it is available?

With the number of positive COVID-19 tests skyrocketing across much of the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Vancouver Island business ad unintentionally features OK gesture linked to white supremacy

Innocuous ‘OK’ gesture in cleaning franchise advertisement gets flak on social media for ‘supposedly’ promoting white supremacy

Comox Valley RCMP looking for missing woman

Ami Guthrie was last seen in Courtenay in early July

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Most Read