UPDATE: Cornwall Future Shop closes, but former employee says it will reopen as Best Buy

UPDATE: Cornwall Future Shop closes, but former employee says it will reopen as Best Buy

Future Shop Cornwall General Manager Nick Karlis.

CORNWALL, Ontario – It appears electronics lovers in Cornwall may have a new store to get their fix.

Reports indicate all Future Shop stores in the country closed Saturday morning, though one employee at the former Cornwall store says the local operation will be rebranded as a Best Buy. A sign in the window at the store indicates the same.

The 21 employees at the Cornwall store were shocked to learn the news Saturday morning. There was no warning of an impending announcement.

Best Buy Canada announced Saturday the closure of 66 Future Shop locations, effective immediately. Concurrently, an additional 65 Future Shop stores will be temporarily closed for one week as they begin their transition to the Best Buy brand.

“Currently, 80 per cent of our customers are within a 15 minute drive to a store and this won’t change,” said Ron Wilson, president and COO of Best Buy Canada, in a statement. “We will continue to have a strong store presence in all major markets in Canada.”

As a result of this consolidation, approximately 500 full-time and 1,000 part-time positions will be eliminated. The affected employees will receive severance, employee assistance and outplacement support.

Nothing specific to Cornwall has been announced by the company, but a former Future Shop employee at the local store said the closure in the Seaway City is not permanent.

“The Cornwall Future Shop location will be re-branded as Best Buy and re-open,” said the employee who did not wish to be named because they have not been authorized to speak on the matter.

The employee said sales staff at Future Shop were let go, but can reapply for the same position at the Best Buy.

They can’t legally give sales a job at Best Buy due to the job being different and less than what we had,” they said.

A phone call to the Cornwall Future Shop at 10 a.m. Saturday resulted in an automated message indicating the store is closed, and directed shoppers to futureshop.ca.

Futureshop.ca now directs customers to bestbuy.ca.

The Cornwall store opened barely four months ago and was Future Shop’s 135th in Canada.

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