Rona’s south Red Deer store closing

Lowe’s-owned Rona to keep the north Red Deer store open

Red Deer’s south-end Rona store is closing at the end of July.

Rona stores, including two in Red Deer, became part of the Lowe’s chain in a $3.2-billion acquisition that closed in May 2016. The south store is located at 2610 50th Ave. next to Canadian Tire.

Lowe’s spokeswoman Valérie Gonzalo said of the south store’s 35 employees, 15 have been moved to Rona’s north-end store at the former Totem Building Supplies building at 7730 Gaetz Avenue or the new Lowe’s store in south Red Deer off Taylor Drive.

The 103,600-square-foot Lowe’s store opened its doors in January and employs almost 130 as well as 25 to 40 seasonal employees.

Gonzalo said more former Rona employees may be on the move to other stores as spring arrives.

“We are currently in the process of working on potential opportunities for the remaining 20 employees given we are approaching the high season in all of our stores,” she said in an email.

The Rona store in the north end will remain open.

“We are consolidating the Rona business in the Red Deer north store because it benefits from a strong retail and contractor base and it is geographically located further out from the Lowe’s location,” she said from Lowe’s Canada’s head office in Boucherville, Que.

An appliance department was added to the store last year.

Meanwhile, stock in the south Rona will be liquidated over the next four months.

The building is owned by long-time Red Deer family business JK Mah Enterprises Ltd. The future use of the building has not been determined yet.

Red Deer’s Lowe’s store was the U.S.-based hardware giant’s 62nd new opening since it entered the Canadian market in 2007.

Since then, other Western Canadian stores have opened up in St. Alberta, Leduc, Winnipeg and Vernon, B.C.

Lowe’s Canadian business, together with its wholly owned subsidiary, RONA Inc., operates or services more than 630 corporate and independent affiliate dealer stores under a number of different banners, including Lowe’s, RONA, Réno-Dépôt, Marcil, Dick’s Lumber and Ace.

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