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RadioShack To Form Canadian Unit

Fort Worth, Texas — RadioShack will open 20 to 30 eponymous stores in Canada by year’s end.

The move follows a Texas district court ruling in March that blocked Circuit City from using the RadioShack name in Canada. Circuit City contends that it has rights to the name north of the border through a pre-existing licensing arrangement with InterTAN, its new Canadian subsidiary. RadioShack successfully argued before the lower court that the licensing arrangement was nullified by Circuit City’s acquisition of the Canadian retail group.

“I have one thing to say to our Canadian customers:RadioShack will continue to be there to service your consumer electronics needs,” said David Edmondson, president and CEO-elect of RadioShack, “For more than 35 years, RadioShack has been a household name to Canadians, and that’s why we fought so hard to protect our brand. The loyalty and trust our customers place in us has made our name one of the most powerful brands in North America.”

Edmondson said that the new Canadian stores will be located for the most part in the Toronto area and will embrace the company’s new “best to shop” concept store format, now being rolled out throughout the United States.

He added that RadioShack is also extending offers to existing independent Canadian RadioShack dealers who wish to continue operating under the company’s brand name and infrastructure after June.

In a written response to RadioShack’s announcement, InterTAN president/CEO Brian Levy noted that, “The Texas district court has only issued a partial ruling on the legal issues between InterTAN and RadioShack. Once a final ruling is issued by the court, Circuit City and its InterTAN subsidiary fully intend to appeal to protect our rights under the license agreement and for exclusive use of the RadioShack brand in Canada until 2009.

“Yesterday, RadioShack acknowledged the loyalty and trust that Canadians have placed in its brand over the years. For decades, InterTAN has been the steward of the RadioShack brand in Canada, operating the stores, employing the staff, managing and, in recent years, developing the vast majority of the Canadian product offering independent of the Texas-based company,” Levy said, adding, “Accordingly, it is the associates and stores operated by InterTAN that Canadians have come to trust. We believe that Canadian consumers are smart and well-informed, and we intend to continue to earn their trust. While we are disappointed by RadioShack’s hostility and their legal maneuvers, we are focusing our efforts on offering Canadian consumers and our dealers an even broader range of products and more attractive value at The Source By Circuit City,” the newly developed name for the Canadian chain.”