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Payless ShoeSource Files for Bankruptcy in the US, Plans to Close Nearly 400 Stores

Payless ShoeSource Files for Bankruptcy in the US, Plans to Close Nearly 400 Stores

By Ambia Staley

Discount shoe retailer Payless ShoeSource is the latest retail chain in trouble, as the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. on April 4.

Following the filing, the Kansas-based retailer announced immediate plans to close nearly 400 stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico in an effort to reorganize. The company has also reached agreements with many of its top lenders, who will provide up to $385 million in debtor-in-possession financing, which will allow the company to continue business during the bankruptcy process.

Payless CEO Paul Jones said in a statement about the filing, "This is a difficult, but necessary, decision driven by the continued challenges of the retail environment, which will only intensify."

This is not the first sign of trouble for the retailer, who operates 4,400 stores in more than 30 countries. In 2004 hundreds of stores were closed in an attempt at restructuring, and in 2012, Payless' former parent company was bought out and control of Payless was split between Blum Capital Partners and Golden Gate Capital. Trouble was also seen as recently as December 2016, when Payless shuttered all 132 of its Australian locations with a loss of over 700 jobs.

Following the latest store closures, Payless has plans to "aggressively manage" their remaining portfolio, but will also be looking to expand more in international markets, including Latin America.

Currently, there are no announcements regarding Canadian Payless closures. You can view the full list of confirmed store closures online.

Why do you think Payless ShoeSource is struggling in today's retail market? Do you think Canadian Payless locations could be next on the chopping block? Share your thoughts in the comments!

39 Comments

  • NG
    • Wow. Didn't see that one coming.

      Their product is relatively low priced (compared to the competition) and people...well...umm need shoes.

      Kinda baffled that this store could go under...
    • Report Post
    • I think you can include Payless in the same category as Toys-R-Us, which hasn't turned a profit in awhile:

      http://www.njbiz.com/article/20170118/N ... -sales-hit

      They both are getting beat up by Amazon in the online arena, and Walmart in the bricks-and-mortar arena. When your focus is just one narrow product category (shoes or toys), Amazon and Walmart will eat your lunch.
      Not that I agree but you could use the same argument (as many others here have) that Best Buy is also on borrowed time.
    • Report Post
    • Wow. That sucks. I for one am very sad about this. I don't buy shoes online much because the sizing has been slightly off when I did. Shet.
    • Report Post
    • yeap, didn't see this one coming...it's like rolling a dice buying shoes online in terms of sizing.
      TBH i'm surprised Best Buy is still around...I was expecting them to fold a year or two after Futureshop dieded.
    • Report Post
    • twitchyzero wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 5:25 am
      yeap, didn't see this one coming...it's like rolling a dice buying shoes online in terms of sizing.
      I would think shoe stores would be the biggest victims of showrooming... you'd go into the store, try on the shoe you like so you know exactly what size to order, then while in the store, scan the UPC with your phone and order from Amazon/Zappos/whoever.... That totally avoids the dice roll you describe.

      That or if there's a specific brand and style of shoe you have worn for years and always replace with the same kind, that's a no-brainer to order online. Usually a brand of shoe is consistent with its sizing (if you fit Nike size 10 then you can order any Nike of that size and it'll fit) so you have that on your side too.
    • Report Post
    • Everyone needs shoes... But personally I never saw the attraction to this store, sure the prices were low but IMO so was the quality. I grew up old school, buy decent quality, take care of it, and it will last. Low price AND lower quality works for some things that are "trendy" (suppose some people see shoes as trendy and a short term consumerable). Personally, I demand more from my shoes... Comfort is key, so Leather over Plastic. Leather just plain wears better & lasts longer. I have been known to "repair & wear" a good pair of shoes / boots for years. Plastic just ends up in the landfill a lot sooner, and then if you go out & buy it again it becomes an endless cycle.

      Maybe that has something also to do with their going under... People are now a lot more aware about short term consumerables and their true cost.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 5:43 am
      Everyone needs shoes... But personally I never saw the attraction to this store, sure the prices were low but IMO so was the quality.
      Good point. I have never bought shoes there. Their target market seems to be women who want lots of shoes (one of each color...) but don't want to pay for quality. In other words the quantity over quality group. Exactly the kind of shoe customers who would be easy pickings for Walmart. Payless is the H&M of shoes -- low quality "fast fashion" to be thrown away by next season because it won't last.
    • Report Post
  • NG
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 5:58 am
      Good point. I have never bought shoes there. Their target market seems to be women who want lots of shoes (one of each color...) but don't want to pay for quality.

      The mens shoes must be different. I'm wearing a pair of their plain black runners that have gel insoles built in as well as a pair of winter boots from there that's going on four years (albeit only when it's snowy/below zero). They've both held up fine.
    • Report Post
  • NG
    • twitchyzero wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 5:25 am
      yeap, didn't see this one coming...it's like rolling a dice buying shoes online in terms of sizing.
      TBH i'm surprised Best Buy is still around...I was expecting them to fold a year or two after Futureshop dieded.
      I agree. Plus most of the shoes Payless sells are house brands so it's not like customers can try them on in store and buy them online elsewhere (aside from random eBay/Marketplace sellers).

      There's gotta be some bad management going on for this to be happening. A low cost shoe chain shouldn't be looking at filing for bankruptcy.
    • Report Post
    • NG wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 7:11 am
      There's gotta be some bad management going on for this to be happening. A low cost shoe chain shouldn't be looking at filing for bankruptcy.
      Another competitor who I'm sure is killing them (definitely in the US) would have to be DSW. I've never been inside one but I can see their stores are a lot bigger than Payless. So if they're getting beat up by Amazon, Zappos, Walmart, and DSW...

      http://seekingalpha.com/article/4043394 ... -strengths
    • Report Post
    • their shoe quality and style was starting to go downhill. Their price range was starting to reach the price of a pair of Nike shoes. Grabbed a door crasher deal from sport Chek owned by crappy tire and its still kicking after 3 years. Paid 50 bucks for it after taxes. Was 44.99 before taxes. Works out to be approx 15 dollars per year.
      I still have a pair of sandals from payless before it went downhill.

      I saw it coming lol.
    • Report Post
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 11:18 am
      Another competitor who I'm sure is killing them (definitely in the US) would have to be DSW. I've never been inside one but I can see their stores are a lot bigger than Payless. So if they're getting beat up by Amazon, Zappos, Walmart, and DSW...

      http://seekingalpha.com/article/4043394 ... -strengths
      Good points.

      Been in a DSW in Syracuse (1/2 the basement @ Destiny USA) have to say I was impressed, brand name decent quality footwear at reasonable prices, and they have a large clearance area at thr back of the store with prices even further discounted (to the point of almost ridiculous). Have bought shoes here over the years for the whole family including myself.

      I read somewheres that DSW is now in Canada, although am yet to see one.

      I would expect that Payless is also a victim of the competition that advertises all the time on tv... where the woman has a gigantic closet and shoes of every possible colour. Company has Fab in its name (sorry don't know their full moniker). As I understand it they are a 100% on line company.

      Personally, like others here shoes are something I want to see / try on in person. So for the most part buying this item online for me would not work.
    • Report Post
    • Most brick and mortar retailer who sells single category products (shoes, small electronics, clothing) will have to shut their shops in next few years. They just cant keep up with growing online competition, rising rental cost, wages and other operating expenses. Next in the line is The Source.
    • Report Post
    • The whole thing seems a little odd. Perhaps the private equity firms involved planned this..?
      Stride Rite Corporation purchased the Sperry Top-Sider and Keds brand names from Uniroyal in 1979. During 2005, Stride Rite completed its acquisition of Saucony. In 2006, Stride Rite purchased Robeez.
      Payless purchased many of these companies during the 2000s, and on August 16, 2007, the company changed its name to Collective Brands, Inc.
      On October 9, 2012, Collective Brands, Inc. announced its acquisition by Golden Gate Capital and Blum Capital was completed. As a result, Payless ShoeSource and Collective Licensing International operate as a private, standalone entity known as Payless Holdings. As part of the transaction, Wolverine World Wide, a Michigan-based boot and shoe manufacturer, acquired Stride Rite Corporation including its Sperry Top-Sider, Keds, Saucony, and other brands from Collective Brands, Inc.[2]
    • Report Post
    • twitchyzero wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 5:25 am
      yeap, didn't see this one coming...it's like rolling a dice buying shoes online in terms of sizing.
      TBH i'm surprised Best Buy is still around...I was expecting them to fold a year or two after Futureshop dieded.
      It'll be two years next month that the Future Shop brand was folded. There's still time ;)
    • Report Post
    • I never found their prices to be that low.
      Avg around $50- $60 for no name pair of shoes.
    • Report Post
    • Dreamrider wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 8:31 pm
      I never found their prices to be that low.
      Avg around $50- $60 for no name pair of shoes.
      Agreed. You can get brand name shoes at a good sales' price or even better, so Payless was never that attractive to me. I do remember we were super-excited when it opened way back, but the novelty wore off quick. I even remember once my wife bought a pair of $40 no name sneakers for one my kids from Payless because we needed it right before school started. Was able to go online and get a fair of Reebok on sale for $10 less, plus we bought a few more pairs for the other kids and ourselves. Back went the original pair to Payless.
    • Report Post
    • I could find better shoes than Payless and lower prices. I just go to the Soft MOC outlet near me and pick up a comfortable pair of leather Clark's for under $50. Or when Bay has their amazing sales. Payless always smells lik annoying plastic when you walk in.
    • Report Post
    • psyko514 wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 7:35 pm
      It'll be two years next month that the Future Shop brand was folded. There's still time ;)
      I think anybody holding their breaths waiting for a great liquidation sale at Best Buy in time for Christmas should do that underwater and I'll check with you by New Year's...

      There are a lot "weaker links" in electronics retailing that will fail first. The Source is an obvious one. 2001 Audio Video is to electronics what Payless is to shoes, so they too should fail before Best Buy (and with a name like that they should have died 16 years ago...)

      I said all along that Best Buy would kill the Future Shop line first and not the other way around. We see the same thing in the USA when Macy's got rid of all those other banners they had collected over the years and stuck with the one most people know. The one recognized worldwide as the sponsor of the New York City Thanksgiving parade.
    • Report Post
    • Dreamrider wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 8:31 pm
      I never found their prices to be that low.
      Avg around $50- $60 for no name pair of shoes.
      This!! Back in the day it used to be a great deal but the prices have gone up so much you might as well just grab a proper name brand for a few bucks more.
    • Report Post
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 12:45 am
      I think anybody holding their breaths waiting for a great liquidation sale at Best Buy in time for Christmas should do that underwater and I'll check with you by New Year's...

      There are a lot "weaker links" in electronics retailing that will fail first. The Source is an obvious one. 2001 Audio Video is to electronics what Payless is to shoes, so they too should fail before Best Buy (and with a name like that they should have died 16 years ago...)

      I said all along that Best Buy would kill the Future Shop line first and not the other way around. We see the same thing in the USA when Macy's got rid of all those other banners they had collected over the years and stuck with the one most people know. The one recognized worldwide as the sponsor of the New York City Thanksgiving parade.
      Ya I honestly have no idea what keeps The Source (aka once-upon-a-time Radio Shack) still alive. I have not shopped there in eons, and don't know anyone else that does either.

      Best Buy vs Future Shop, always knew they were one-in-the-same, but honestly felt that Future Shop was a tad more classy, and if you had asked me 5 years ago, I would have said Best Buy would fall first.

      As for Macy's. We love Macy's. This is how every Department Store should present themselves. Great merchandise, decent layout, friendly knowledgeable staff, and specials that surprise us constantly. Have not a clue how they pull this off.

      Have read that "the ever expanding" HBC Group is looking at buying them.

      One word... NOOOOOOOOO !

      The Bay has gone so far downhill in the last 20 years, that it is now a sad shadow of its former self. Absolutely no personality in the marketplace and it's positioning as far as merchandise, store design, staff and sales... SUCK.

      It truly is just getting by IMO on its historical foundation and nothing else... Like The Source, it's becoming a store that no one I know shops at.

      As recently repported, IF their Banking & Real Estate Development Parent goes into the USA and scoops up Macy's it will be a sad sad day. They'll gut something great. I am literally praying this does not happen, as the only thing I can equate it to is the same sense of loss I felt the day that Eaton's disappeared from the Canadian landscape.
    • Report Post
    • RFDers probably don't shop at Payless but prefer Aldo and Call it Spring.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 2:55 am
      Have read that "the ever expanding" HBC Group is looking at buying them.
      How soon before the "Hudson's Bay" banner disappears and is replaced by the much more prestigious-sounding Saks Fifth Avenue? Already seeing that at the downtown Toronto flagship with the Saks banner more prominently placed, and their sell-off stores using the "Off 5th" banner rather than "Hudson Bay Outlet" (or years ago, Designer Depot).

      If Macy's had no problem killing once-powerful banners as Filene's and Marshall Field's in the name of consolidation, I definitely can see HBC doing similar. It really makes no sense having too many banners, pick the best one and use it everywhere. Loblaws being the worst offender at it, just call them all Loblaws, Superstore or PC Supermarket and be done with it already.
    • Report Post
    • Dreamrider wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 8:31 pm
      I never found their prices to be that low.
      Avg around $50- $60 for no name pair of shoes.
      Exactly why I haven't bought shoes in Canada in almost 20 years. Every pair I have worn in that time has been bought in the U.S.
      It's almost like the dairy cartel -- you can't get shoes for under $50. The cartel sets the minimum price and no matter where you go that's what it'll be.
    • Report Post
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 4:48 am
      How soon before the "Hudson's Bay" banner disappears and is replaced by the much more prestigious-sounding Saks Fifth Avenue? Already seeing that at the downtown Toronto flagship with the Saks banner more prominently placed, and their sell-off stores using the "Off 5th" banner rather than "Hudson Bay Outlet" (or years ago, Designer Depot).

      If Macy's had no problem killing once-powerful banners as Filene's and Marshall Field's in the name of consolidation, I definitely can see HBC doing similar. It really makes no sense having too many banners, pick the best one and use it everywhere. Loblaws being the worst offender at it, just all them all Loblaws, Superstore or PC Supermarket and be done with it already.
      That's Canada for you. Creating a false sense of competition.
      remember the mobile flanker brands? Like I hate xxx store and I'll go to this store! Different banner but same owner. Still get your money.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 11th, 2017 11:45 am
      I read somewheres that DSW is now in Canada, although am yet to see one.
      I've seen banners for DSW (Designer Shoe Warehouse) in Ottawa. But it was more of them renting a relatively small location in a strip mall - and it was only for 3 days in July. Only form of advertisement I saw was the small banners on the grass in front of the building the week before.
    • Report Post
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 4:48 am
      How soon before the "Hudson's Bay" banner disappears and is replaced by the much more prestigious-sounding Saks Fifth Avenue? Already seeing that at the downtown Toronto flagship with the Saks banner more prominently placed, and their sell-off stores using the "Off 5th" banner rather than "Hudson Bay Outlet" (or years ago, Designer Depot).
      Interesting. I knew that HBC's Parent had bought out Saks, but I have not seen any Saks signage in Canada. Perhaps they are dong that in TO, because it has more cache there (know so many Torontonians whos mindset is that their city is like NYCity... That "centre of the universe" mentality).

      I get it, we all get it. Toronto & the GTA is huge. Southern Ontario population is about 1/3 of Canada's whole, but that does not necessarily mean that the rest of us what to be sucked into a 51st State.

      Those of us who live away from the Golden Horseshoe tend to see Canada differently I believe.

      I for one am very proud of Canada and who we are, and what we stand for, so I hate seeing our Retailers being run-over by non-Canadian interests (money is nice, but it is not everything in life)

      Sure I love the access to more goods that Free Trade has brought, but there can be a price paid when someone else holds the purse (sure you know that old joke)

      The Bay is not now half the store it used to be, or could be. So if they buy Macy's, I am thinking they could mess that up too.
      If Macy's had no problem killing once-powerful banners as Filene's and Marshall Field's in the name of consolidation, I definitely can see HBC doing similar. It really makes no sense having too many banners, pick the best one and use it everywhere. Loblaws being the worst offender at it, just call them all Loblaws, Superstore or PC Supermarket and be done with it already.
      True enough. And I too never understood the multi-baner philosophy either, especially in the case of Future Shop & Best Buy that came into Canada at the same time, and literally built stores side-by-side.

      Lobaws Group is just downright confusing... Witness that in any PC Plus convo. Most Consumers have no idea that they banner up at least a dozen brands across Canadaits according to their website) and twice that according to Wikipedia (including franchises). It is just ridiculous. Everyone knows they are Loblaws Group, just mark the stores Loblaws and be done. Or if they have to, use a second banner for their No Frills Stores.
    • Report Post
    • Akitakara wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 9:00 am

      I've seen banners for DSW (Designer Shoe Warehouse) in Ottawa. But it was more of them renting a relatively small location in a strip mall - and it was only for 3 days in July. Only form of advertisement I saw was the small banners on the grass in front of the building the week before.
      Did a GOOGLE, seems that Ottawa does indeed have a DSW at The Trainyards, curious if anyone has been there.
      EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 11:29 am
      Looks like DSW Canada is just another Town Shoes banner:

      http://dsw.townshoes.ca/store/dsw/en/about-us

      So probably nothing like the U.S. chain of the same name...
      Interesting. Ya probably so. Don't get WHY Canada would need "protectionist" measures on shoes, we don't seem to manufacture them here in Canada as far as I know.

      Boots yes, we have several well know Companies for that type of footwear, but shoes, I honestly cannot think of one.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 2:55 am
      Ya I honestly have no idea what keeps The Source (aka once-upon-a-time Radio Shack) still alive. I have not shopped there in eons, and don't know anyone else that does either.
      the source? its used as a bell mobility stand these days. the only time when i see people in there is phone related issue
    • Report Post
    • The Source is a way for Bell to offset their profits with losses. Not really surprised about Payless, their prices are not that great for no name brand low quality shoes.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 5:13 pm
      Don't get WHY Canada would need "protectionist" measures on shoes, we don't seem to manufacture them here in Canada as far as I know.
      Footwear seems to be "protected" by a tariff wall much like dairy is. That's the major reason why shoes and dairy products are so much cheaper in the US. If you're into cross-border shopping, those are two things that should always be on your shopping list (as well as gasoline before you cross home).
    • Report Post
    • Ya I get there is a tariff (I actually understand the NEED for tariffs better than most Canadians do).. What I don't understand is the WHY when it comes to shoes, as our Country does not have a significant shoe industry... Boots for sure (Sorel - Manitobah Mukluks - Boulet - Royer - Roots to name but a few) but no heavy hitters in the shoe industry that i know of. So short of some bureaucrat lumping shoes in with boots as a category (2 very different things given the above examples anyone would agree ... Winter Boots - Work Boots - Cowboy Boots - Casual Boots) I cannot see why we have such heavy restrictions on shoes as a "protectionism" for our working citizens / economy. Makes no sense to me.

      Lol, my MUST BUYS in the US is quite long... Consistently find value in: Gasoline, Alcohol & Beer, Shoes, Leather Goods, Jewelery, Cotton Products & Hosehold Goods. Dairy is certainly cheaper, but too much of a hassle to bring home. We skip the perishables in the Grocery Store instead seeking out Products that are not available in Canada.
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 13th, 2017 4:46 am
      Ya I get there is a tariff (I actually understand the NEED for tariffs better than most Canadians do)
      I am of the opinion that there should be no tariffs on anything. Free trade should apply to everybody.

      Why do certain industries get to legally set up cartels AND have the government in their back pockets with tariff walls? Dairy being the worst offender but also poultry, and also maple syrup (no tariff wall, but Quebec definitely has a cartel -- which is why I only buy Ontario or American maple syrup never Quebec).

      Maybe there should be a CAW-controlled cartel where any vehicle not made in Canada gets hit with a huge tariff when imported? Or any smartphone not made by Blackberry gets hit with a huge tariff? Or any winter coat not made by Canada Goose gets hit? (if that sounds very Donald Trump ... that's no coincidence) Since you understand the need (and sound so proud of it) for it, care to justify why dairy farmers and shoe manufacturers deserve preferential treatment over other businesses (that employ a LOT more Canadians than the dairy farms do).
    • Report Post
    • PointsHubby wrote:
      Feb 12th, 2017 5:04 pm
      True enough. And I too never understood the multi-baner philosophy either, especially in the case of Future Shop & Best Buy that came into Canada at the same time, and literally built stores side-by-side.
      Loblaws and its two dozen names has been beaten to death so I won't go there again, but I wanted to clarify/correct you on the Best Buy/Future Shop story. If I'm inaccurate please set me straight.

      Future Shop was originally founded as an independent company out of Vancouver and gradually spread nationwide (in Canada). Best Buy was originally founded as an independent company out of St. Paul, MN and spread nationwide (in America). In 2001 Best Buy quietly bought/took over Future Shop, and left that chain alone while gradually opening new "Best Buy"-bannered stores across Canada too. (let's call it what it is -- this is almost like Rogers/Fido or Bell/Virgin or Telus/Koodo; same shit different paint job). Fast forward to 2015 when Best Buy decided to ditch the extra banner and consolidate the business under just the one.

      I never understood the fanboy adoration of Future Shop over Best Buy on RFD. They were IDENTICAL. They had the same things on sale in the flyers every week (you could hold them side by side and match almost everything up). The stores were laid out pretty much the same. The only difference was, one store is blue and gold the other was red and white. Initially FS sold more kitchen appliances (but eventually BB caught up to them). And (probably the major one, but didn't change how I shop) that FS used commissioned sales staff, BB paid its staff straight hourly only. To say FS was better than BB is as silly as saying Fido is better than Rogers.

      I'm surprised nobody's mentioned them but similar American takeovers of Canadian retailers include Staples buying Business Depot, Boise Cascade/Office Depot buying Grand and Toy, Lowe's (finally) eating Rona*, Home Depot eating Aikenhead's (anybody remember that one?), and more recently the current owners of HBC buying the Bay chain (and killing Zellers, and now bringing Saks here).

      * I can't wait to see Rona disappear once and for all.
    • Report Post
    • @EastGTARedFlagger

      Well, seeing as you brought up The Donald...

      Let's look at milk.

      Not so long ago milk was a far more precarious commodity as far as availability & transportation to urban & metropolitan centres, due to its perishable factor (where the terms milk train & milk run come from)

      The Canadian Dairy Commission was instrumental in getting things organized into a Supply = Demand situation so there was neither over or under production and less spoilage. Hence the Quota system, which is used to project supply & demand.

      The Canadian Dairy Industry is controlled so as not to put every dairy farmer in this country out of business by our country being flooded with American milk... Farming is not an easy job, and if no one did it we'd litterally be at the hands of a foreign interest.

      Look at our landscape, how big the country, our short growing season, and the relatively few Dairy Farms across the country to provide milk for over 37 Million people. Before the Dairy Commission came to be, milk was a difficult commodity to get a supply of in a consistent manner if one lived in the city (and by 1966 more and more Canadians were moving to the cities, today 80% of Canadians live in Urban Centres, and a full 66% of Canadians live in our largest Metroplitan areas).

      Milk is basically a raw material, In that almost all the Canadian Dairy products you see in your Grocery Store are made from it, not to mention all the other things that have Milk as an ingredient (like Bread). These are staples.

      So you for example cannot compare Milk to say Cars or Cellphones, all nice things to have, but not considered necessities to life.

      If we were not producing our own Milk, and a US President such as The Donald decided to throw some sort temper tantrum, and enact a wall against Canada importing / exporting with the USA, we'd be in deep doo-doo. Overnight we'd be on the verge of a serious food shortage... Milk is literally that important here.

      The other agricultural products you mentioned have Boards & Regulations for similar reasons, to both protect our Canadian Farmers as well as to ensure that there is a supply for the Canadian Consumer no matter where they live in our Country.


      Shoes, as I said I have not got a clue as to WHY the Canadian shoe industry is protected from competition. Boots perhaps in so much as we have a strong presence in that arena, but I don't get shoes.
    • Report Post
    • EastGTARedFlagger wrote:
      Feb 13th, 2017 5:29 am

      Future Shop was originally founded as an independent company out of Vancouver and gradually spread nationwide (in Canada). Best Buy was originally founded as an independent company out of St. Paul, MN and spread nationwide (in America). In 2001 Best Buy quietly bought/took over Future Shop, and left that chain alone while gradually opening new "Best Buy"-bannered stores across Canada too. (let's call it what it is -- this is almost like Rogers/Fido or Bell/Virgin or Telus/Koodo; same shit different paint job). Fast forward to 2015 when Best Buy decided to ditch the extra banner and consolidate the business under just the one.

      I never understood the fanboy adoration of Future Shop over Best Buy on RFD. They were IDENTICAL. They had the same things on sale in the flyers every week (you could hold them side by side and match almost everything up). The stores were laid out pretty much the same. The only difference was, one store is blue and gold the other was red and white. Initially FS sold more kitchen appliances (but eventually BB caught up to them). And (probably the major one, but didn't change how I shop) that FS used commissioned sales staff, BB paid its staff straight hourly only. To say FS was better than BB is as silly as saying Fido is better than Rogers.
      Interesting, I did not know the history... I was always under the assumption (clearly wrongly so) that they were indeed one in the same even prior to 2001 for the exact reasons you pointed out... So many similarities in merchandise, stores, flyers etc.
      I'm surprised nobody's mentioned them but similar American takeovers of Canadian retailers include Staples buying Business Depot, Boise Cascade/Office Depot buying Grand and Toy, Lowe's (finally) eating Rona*, Home Depot eating Aikenhead's (anybody remember that one?), and more recently the current owners of HBC buying the Bay chain (and killing Zellers, and now bringing Saks here).

      * I can't wait to see Rona disappear once and for all.
      To be honest, I am not a one solution fits everything kind of person. So as much as I understand protecting "essential" Canadian raw materials & interests in the marketplace, I sometimes have a meh feeling about certain buyouts & takeovers or US Big Box Stores coming here.

      Business Depot & Grand & Toy, no great loss IMO. Aikenheads never heard of. I was far more affected by Beaver Lumber being absorbed into Home Hardware. Rona, I can give or take, have to admit it has been drawing out a slow death for what seems like forever. I was far more affected by Beaver Lumber being absorbed into Home Harware, or the demise of Pascals. A&P, Dominion, Steinbergs, they all had a fairly big impact. Eaton's disappearing act as it was absorbed into Sears, then poof vanished. And the sadness of seeing popular Zellers sold off to a poorly thought out Canadian "barely there" Target. Not to mention the iconic Canadian HBC being bought out by a US Firm.

      Like most Canadian Consumers I am pleased that NAFTA brought more US Big Box Retailers here... Nice to have more selection in merchandise as well as where to shop. So ya, I like Costco, Home Depot, Lowes, and the TJ Maxx family (Winners, HomeSense, Marshall's). The only one big boxer I take issue with is Walmart, so much so that I won't shop there.

      Although some might disagree, we are not on a level playing field with our US Neighbours... Their population is 10x bigger, and 10x stronger. If we don't find a way to be different AND successful without being strongly tied to the USA (growing our Canadian identity not selling out) we will truly be doomed to be the 51st State by selling off our past as well as our future.

      Like I said above, if you sell off all the cows, then you become too dependent on your neighbour for milk, and that can become an "udder" disaster (ya I went there) when the neighbour sets the terms by which you now buy the milk you need / no longer have. First he goes so low you cannot resist, and thereby eliminates the rest of the competition, then he starts to dominate and have too much power, holding you hostage at his beck and call. He sets the price, and even decides whether he will deliver to you at all.

      This is what I call the Walmart effect. Millions of people around the world have fallen for Walmart's "cheap" is best formula, but all it has done is make it harder for everyone they touch... Be it Supplier, Customer or Employee. The only people truly better off cause of Walmart are it's owners who now head up the World's Largest Company / Retailer and line their pockets with BILLION$$$$$

      We have to recognize that going home at the end of every day with all the marbles may make Johnny a happy boy, and many may envy his celebrity status, but that truly is temporary, as it does not enrich his life, more so when all those he scored on / took advantage of, eventually get fed up or angry as they have lost ground & independence.
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    • I for one welcome our American overlords
      Costco for the win.

      Futureshop at some locations was downright terrible...the management of each location can make or break the experience. Price matching was always a pain in the ass 10 years ago by my place, pop down the block to Best Buy and they don't treat you like a criminal.
      As much as I dislike Futureshop/Best Buy I hope they will remain an online store when their stores eventually close for good.

      I haven't frequented the hot deals forums in years. Is NCIX and Memory Express still doing OK? I only try to look out for businesses that popped up in the West as they're probably more fragile; London Drugs, MEC, etc.
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    • twitchyzero wrote:
      Feb 13th, 2017 6:08 pm
      I for one welcome our American overlords
      Costco for the win.

      Sorry, I disagree with that 120%. Rather than repeat myself, here's why:

      costco-price-increases-within-days-1692831/5/#p26664212

      In summary, monopolies/category killers are bad for consumers. You always want competition to keep everybody honest.

      Imagine Air Canada if WestJet and Porter weren't around.
      Imagine Rogers if Bell, Telus, Shaw/Freedom, and Videotron weren't around (if that happens I'd move to Trump's America)
      Imagine Loblaws if Metro, Sobeys, and Walmart all failed.
      and of course
      Imagine Amazon and Netflix if all other retail died.

      Not a pretty picture folks. Be careful what you wish for.
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