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Le Chateau planning more store closures as e-commerce hits business

Last Updated May 18, 2018 at 7:20 pm EDT

MONTREAL – Le Chateau Inc. says e-commerce has forced it to close 52 stores in the past two years and it plans to close another 20 this year.

The Montreal-based clothing company says last year’s store closures led to revenue in the last quarter dropping 10.6 per cent from a year earlier, while heavy discounts during closures also cut into margins.

Le Chateau says overall sales came in at $56 million for the quarter ended Jan. 27, while comparable store sales were down 1.7 per cent for the quarter from a year ago.

The company says it had a net loss of $3 million or 10 cents per share for the last quarter, an improvement from the same quarter a year ago when it had a loss of $8.8 million or 29 cents per share.

Le Chateau says the closure of numerous non-performing stores, along with improved inventory level and quality of merchandise, should help improve the company’s gross margin this year.

The company has about 151 retail locations across Canada as well as an e-commerce platform serving Canada and the U.S.