: Years Later: Was Best Buy buying Futureshop a good thing?

2007-06-19, 09:43 AM
I was thinking today that Best Buy has done some great things in Canada over the last few years. I remember walking into my first Best Buy store in Canada and going wow!

In addition, I didn't have annoying commission salespeople crawling all over me. It seems that with BB, there was more selection, better pricing and things were good.

Now I'm not so happy. Prices at BB/FS seem high as the company gets a stranglehold on the Cdn market and service levels seem to drop.

What do you think?

2007-06-19, 09:46 AM
I voted Not Sure because I still like BB over FS but the lack of competition is problematic.

2007-06-19, 10:04 AM
For years now FS has never had any of the big ticket items that I wanted in stock. Getting a firm delivery date for an order was also a problem.

Lately, I seem to be getting the same thing from BB. The last time I was there I asked them to order an out of stock item for me (a ~$100 router) and they said sure, as long as I pay in full first!!

Needless to say I haven't been in a BB or FS since spring.

2007-06-19, 10:39 AM
I just bought an LG DVD recorder at a Grand Forks ND Best Buy. This model has the built in tuner and was not available in Canada. The US Bestbuy had a much larger selection all around, and better prices. This was in a US city with less than a 1/3 of the Winnipeg population. What is the logic of that?

2007-06-19, 02:13 PM
Partly its because some US products arent sold in Canada due to warranty limitations.

And also the US/CAN exchange rate has not been updated. Paying US MSRP is far less expensive than paying CAN MSRP. And if you can get a discount on US MSRP....then its just no comparison.

Personally I think FS has gotten a lot better the the last few years. The selection is better, prices are ok, but from my experience salespeople have gotten slimy-er

2007-06-19, 03:01 PM
Was Best Buy buying Futureshop a good thing?

Yes for Best Buy and Future Shop....

2007-06-19, 07:29 PM
The nice thing with FS and BB is there ability to provide generous return policies; a thing the smaller stores cannot provide. For the most part, the smaller stores can usually match FS or BB price wise but if you don't like the product 2 weeks from now, it is somewhat difficult to return for your money back. They prefer to issue a store credit. I try to buy from the smaller shops when I can but typically go to FS or BB if I can't find what I want in a smaller shop.

I agree, both FS and BB play against each other on sale prices and know that you're going to buy from one or the other. Either way, they're getting your dollar.

Circuit City should drive the final nail in The Source's coffin and open up some Circuit City's in Canada to drive the competition.


2007-06-19, 07:42 PM
Its only a matter of time when BB starts closing FS stores. They had to establish themselves in Canada.

2007-06-19, 07:55 PM
Even though we here in TB do not have BB. I voted Not sure because I saw no real difference now and before BB bought FS. I also rarely get a salesperson hounding me. Maybe it's a TB thing. I do get a salesperson asking if I needed help with something if I am looking around in a department and an employee is walking by, which should be done at all stores and most stores do this.

2007-06-19, 10:21 PM
Its only a matter of time when BB starts closing FS stores.

They must figure there is a market for both stores.
Here in London we've had 2 FS and 1 BB for quite a while. In the south end of town there is a FS and BB about 1km apart on the same street. In the north end FS just moved to a new store and the old FS building is being renovated and turned into a new BB. These two are also on the same street and a few km apart.
If there wasn't a market for both stores they wouldn't have 2 stores in the south end close together and 2 stores in the north end close together.

2007-06-20, 06:36 AM
There's 2, soon to be 3 BB's, in Ottawa. One is probably 75 steps door to door from a FS. The newest BB going in will be across a parking lot from the current FS. I can't imagine they'll be closing any FS's any time soon. There's probably more people who don't know they are the same company than those who do. This will make them think they're getting a deal when they can go to a different store and save 10 bucks. :)

2007-06-20, 07:53 AM
BB's and FS's regular and sale prices are generally better than those of their competitors, and their price-matching and return policies are almost too generous. However, because I don't know/recall what things were like before BB bought FS, I voted "Not Sure".

2007-06-20, 08:11 AM
The decision by BB to leave the FS banner and build BB nearby was derided by critics as too costly but in hindsight was quite brilliant.

The problem I see now is that the two chains have something like a 70% marketshare in Consumer electronics (please don't quote me on the % since I am recalling a number I read a few months ago and may be quoting out of context).

It seems that as BB becomes dominant, the only way to increase profits will be to raise prices since they have most of the sales. Again, I am not saying they will but I would like to see another competitor in the marketplace.

I have been spending more money at Tigerdirect over the last year as I have been able to find product not at BB or FS as well as buy it cheaper.

2007-06-20, 09:17 AM
Best Buy will not close FS stores at all.

They are targeting different market segments. Best Buy is directed at the same market segment as Best Buy in the US. During the past three years, FS has been moved upscale both in terms of product selection and store design. You can't help but notice the difference when you walk into an FS these days.

The dual banner tactic has been so successful for BB in Canada that they are about to roll out the dual banner model in other countries.

As far as hugh's point about price's edging up as a result of market share, it has already happened. There have been a number of recent instances where a product I wanted was ticketed substantially cheaper (ie. 25% - 35%) at London Drugs, another mainstream B&M retailer not even Tigerdirect or NCIX.

As an aside, if memory serves, was it not more of a merger than a buyout (swapping of equity stake, etc)?

2007-06-20, 10:54 AM
they wont close fs locations. ive made this post before but here it is again....

i worked for FS when best buy bought them, and orginally they thought that sales would suffer at FS locations when BB locations would open nearby. What they found was quite the opposite. When a BB location opened (even if it was right beside a FS) sales at the FS location were pretty much unaffected, and sales at the new BB were also good. It seemed that instead of sucking sales from the other store, they were instead capturing more market share from other retail chains....

2007-06-20, 11:09 AM
Every Friday I check the FS & BB flyers and I have to carefully sort out my wants from my needs, if you know what I mean. I have noticed a much "cleaner" streamline approach by FS lately. They used to resemble junky warehouses.
As far as pricing and consumer control, I always check online for pricing of items, watch for the Office Depot and Staples flyers for computer stuff or wait for a better offer from FS/BB. But it's hard to pit the two together for a price difference because they cleverly change model numbers, even though they are the same. Yes, it was a good move. Preference to BB.

2007-06-20, 12:55 PM
I personally hate both stores. But I always prefer to shop at Canadian owned. And now that FS is american owned there is no reason for me to shop there. I try to avoid it if I can, by going to the little audio/video shops. Most times they beat or at least meet the prices if asked. If you are in Whitby there is Whitby Audio Video and Hi-Fi centre on Dundas.