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West Marine plans exit from Canadian market

Marine retailer West Marine will close 10 stores in Canada during the next few years, ending its presence in the country.

“We have some fantastic associates up in Canada. This was a very difficult decision for us,” West Marine CEO Matthew Hyde told analysts during a quarterly earnings call Oct. 23. “That said, this is all about ensuring that when leases come up that we’re making the right determination about where we invest our money.”

The company has seven leases coming up throughout the coming year, “so we’re going to be in Canada for quite some time,” Hyde said.

But the leases that were coming up “didn’t meet our minimum hurdles,” he said. Also, Canada faces some additional expenses. “So we will be closing our stores in Canada over the next few years,” Hyde said.

With the exception of the Toronto store, where the company has the lease termination at the end of this year, the six additional stores will operate “basically through the season,” said CFO Thomas Moran.

“As you can imagine, Canada is a pretty highly seasonal market. So that's just a callout about next year. But beyond that, the impact on our top-line sales and on in our contribution and profitability is immaterial [in 2015],” Moran said.

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