LFL closes 72 stores, layoffs 50% of workforce in wake of pandemic
TORONTO – Leon’s Furniture Limited (LFL) has made “the very difficult decision” to temporarily close 72 of its 205 corporate stores across the country and layoff about 3,900 employees as part of its response to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement, the publicly held full-line furniture, mattress and major appliance retailer – this country’s largest – noted the temporary layoffs will affect approximately 50% of its current workforce. The decision was made after suffering “significant changes in overall customer traffic and other “changes in the marketplace”.
While LFL did not provide a list of the stores to be closed, this past Tuesday (24 March) the provincial governments of both Quebec and Ontario have ordered all ‘non-essential’ businesses operating within their jurisdictions to close for at least the next 14 days. LFL also operates a nationwide network of 99 franchise locations, who are likely to fall under the new provincial regulations.
“As always, LFL is committed to its valued employees and will be enhancing the employment insurance benefits available to impacted employees with supplemental payments from the company,” the statement read. “In addition, LFL will extend company paid benefits to these individuals.”
The move will affect all the company’s banners, which include Leon’s Furniture, The Brick, The Brick Mattress Store, Appliance Canada and Midnorthern Appliance.
The statement noted LFL “will continue to serve Canadians by providing essential products for the home both through open physical locations and online, through leons.ca, thebrick.com, furniture.ca, and appliancecanada.ca. LFL will maintain its offering of repair and installation services for the home to its loyal customers, through transglobalservice.com. The company will continue to make responsible adjustments to its business practices as the situation continues to evolve.”
LFL joins a growing list of furniture, furnishings and appliance stores that have closed their doors as part of the effort to combat the ongoing pandemic. They include IKEA Canada, BMTC Group, Sleep Country Canada and Tepperman’s, among others.
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