Electronics giant Best Buy is closing 15 Best Buy and Future Shop stores across Canada.
The closures will leave about 900 employees out of work.
"The fact is, Best Buy is not doing well," said University of Manitoba business professor Victor Cui. Its stock dropped 33.6% last year, as competitors like Target, Costco and Walmart all saw double-digit increases. "How do you make an ugly balance sheet look better? Cut costs," Cui said.
Best Buy has already closed 50 stores in the U.S.
"I expected to have a job when I got up this morning," David Chabot, who worked at a Future Shop in Barrie, Ont. "No one really had much notification, but I guess this is just the way things are going right now."
A note posted on a Best Buy store's front door Thursday in Winnipeg was addressed "to all employees." "As you may imagine, this was a very difficult decision to make," it read.
The following stores are closing immediately:
Best Buy stores in Queensborough, Nanaimo, Victoria, Langford (Westshore Town Centre), and South Surrey, British Columbia; and Lachenaie, and Sherbrooke (SmartCentres Sherbrooke), Quebec.
Future Shop stores in West Kelowna, British Columbia; Montreal (Forum Entertainment Center), Laval (First Pro Ste-Dorothee), Quebec; Regent, Manitoba; Macleod, Calgary; as well as Ancaster, Barrie South and Erin Mills, Ontario.
-- With files from Lance Holdforth