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Nov 5, 2018

Lowe’s to close 27 stores in Canada by February

What Lowe's store closures say about the home improvement market

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Lowe’s Cos. (LOW.N) announced it will close 51 underperforming store locations by Feb. 1, 2019 in Canada and the U.S., as part of the hardware store chain’s ongoing reassessment of its business strategy.

The North Carolina-based retailer said Monday that it will close 27 stores, two plants and two corporate locations in Canada. In the U.S., 20 stores will be shuttered.

"While decisions that impact our associates are never easy, the store closures are a necessary step in our strategic reassessment as we focus on building a stronger business," said Marvin R. Ellison, the president and CEO of Lowe's, in a release. 

The U.S. big box retailer acquired Quebec-based Rona Inc. in 2016 in a deal valued at about $3.2 billion, following an unsuccessful takeover attempt in 2012.

Lowe's Canadian business has more than 630 corporate and independent affiliate dealer stores. It includes Lowe's, Rona, Reno-Depot, Dick's Lumber, Contractor First and Ace.

The company has more than 28,000 employees in Canada, in addition to nearly 5,000 employees in Rona’s independent affiliate dealer stores.

The federal government expressed concern over potential job losses and said it will continue to monitor the situation closely.

"The Government is concerned for the workers who will be affected by these store closures. We are always concerned to learn about any job losses," a spokesperson told BNN Bloomberg via email. 

"At the time of its acquisition of Rona, Lowe’s made legally binding commitments under the Investment Canada Act. These commitments are closely monitored and if required, enforceable." 

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The union representing 260 Rona employees in Newfoundland and Labrador were notified of the closures and handed severance letters on Sunday evening, according to the Atlantic Canada Regional Council of Carpenters, Millwrights and Allied Workers (ACRC). The Rona workers in Newfoundland were told that effective Jan. 27, 2019, they would no longer be employed and Rona will close.

“We are shocked by this news and we are equally shocked at the insensitive and disrespectful manner in which these employees were told this news,” Debbie Romero, executive secretary treasurer of ACRC, said in an emailed statement. “This is a significant economic blow to hundreds of people and to the economy of Newfoundland and Labrador.  Our members, the employees of RONA and the people of Newfoundland and Labrador deserve better from Lowe’s.” 

Romero added that the union plans to request an urgent meeting with Lowe’s.

Here are the Lowe’s and Rona stores that will be closed in Canada, according to its website:

British Columbia
RONA Columbia Square
105-1015 Columbia Street, New Westminister

Alberta
RONA Calgary (Douglasdale)
11520 – 24th Street SE, Calgary

Reno-Depot Calgary West
12330 Symons Valley Road NW, Calgary

Ontario
RONA Mississauga (Westdale Mall)
1133 Dundas Street West, Mississauga

RONA Mississauga (Lakeshore)
1692 Lakeshore Rd, Mississauga

RONA Sault Ste. Marie
132 Black Road, Sault Ste. Marie

RONA Sudbury
943 Barry Downe Road, Sudbury

RONA Peterborough
1575 Chemong Road, Peterborough

RONA Kingston (Bath Road)
1452 Bath Road, Kingston

RONA Lakefield
178 Water Street, Lakefield

Lowe’s North York – Centerpoint
6600 Yonge Street, North York

Lowe’s Sault Ste. Marie
248 Northern Avenue, Sault Ste. Marie

Québec
RONA Ste-Clotilde
335, Route 209, Sainte-Clotilde-de-Chateauguay

RONA Iberville
870, boulevard d’Iberville, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu

RONA L’Assomption
723, boulevard L’Ange-Gardien, L’Assomption

RONA Granby Moeller
788, rue Moeller, Grandby

RONA Ste-Rose
134, boulevard Sainte-Rose, Laval

RONA Rivière-des-Prairies
9200, boulevard Maurice-Duplessis, Montréal

RONA Rouyn-Noranda
1200, rue Mantha, Rouyn-Noranda

RONA Ange-Gardien
194, rue Principale, Ange-Gardien

RONA Saint-Elzéar
100, rue du Parc Industriel, Saint Elzéar

Newfoundland
RONA Conception Bay South (Killigrews)
825 Conception Bay Hwy, Conception Bay

RONA Goulds
53-59 Main Highway, Goulds

RONA St. John’s (Topsail)
1297 Topsail Road, St. John’s

RONA St. John’s (O’Leary)
60 O’Leary Avenue, St. John’s

RONA St. John’s (Torbay)
710 Torbay Road, St. John’s

RONA Bay Roberts
239 Conception Bay, Bay Roberts