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Circuit City completes sale of Canadian assets

Mon, 07/06/2009 - 8:05am
Michael Felberbaum, AP Business Writer

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Electronics retailer Circuit City Stores Inc., which has closed all of its U.S. stores, said Thursday it has completed the sale of its Canadian stores to telecommunications company Bell Canada.

The entity Bell Canada acquired, InterTan Canada Ltd., controls 750 The Source electronics stores. Bell Canada bought it for $116.8 million, plus $30.3 million for working capital, according to documents filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Bell CEO George Cope said that the stores will offer a range of consumer products, such as Bell Mobility and Virgin Mobile cell phones and television, Internet and phone products and services.

The stores, many of which are former Radio Shacks, will continue to operate independently from Bell.

Richmond, Va.-based Circuit City filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy court protection in November 2008 and closed its last 567 U.S. stores in March, laying off about 34,000 workers. A small staff remains at its corporate office.

The company, which posted losses in seven of its final eight quarters, faced heightened competition, pressure from vendors and waning consumer spending. It had hoped to emerge this summer as a more competitive company, but the hobbled credit market and consumer spending cuts proved insurmountable.

Circuit City's brand, trademarks and e-commerce business were sold in May to Systemax Inc., the same company that purchased electronics retailer CompUSA's intellectual property when it closed in 2008, for $14 million plus at least $3 million from the revenue the assets generate over 30 months.

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