TORONTO – Sporting Life Inc. and Golf Town Limited have announced they will merge to become Sporting Life Group Limited (“SLG”).
Sporting Life is a premium sports and lifestyle retailer that provides an assortment of high-end sport and lifestyle brands coupled with a focus on premium customer service. It currently has 11 locations operating in Ontario, Alberta and Quebec, following the recent opening of a 27, 500 square foot store last week. In 2019, it will open another flagship store in the new “Amazing Brentwood” Mall in Vancouver.
Golf Town is the largest retailer for golf apparel and equipment in Canada, with a national footprint of 47 stores. Golf Town has been incredibly successful since its acquisition by Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited (“Fairfax”) (TSX: FFH and FFH.U) and certain funds managed by Signature Global Asset Management, a division of CI Investments Inc., in 2016.
Fairfax, and founders David Russell and Patti Russell, were the owners of Sporting Life and both continue to be invested in Sporting Life Group.
The merger will see the two brands continue to maintain their brand identities and operate separately, but they will jointly invest in key people, technology and supply chain to enhance future profitable growth and synergies.
“Sporting Life experiences its strongest sales in the winter months, while Golf Town experiences its strongest sales in the summer months,” said David Russell, Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder of Sporting Life. “We believe this to be a natural ‘hedge’ allowing both companies strong profitable performance throughout the year.”
“Enhancing our people, technology and supply chain while obtaining synergies will allow for a streamlined, profitable roll out of our expansion plans. We intend to add stores in B.C beyond Brentwood, more in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec, and to enter Manitoba,” added Russell.
Golf Town continues to invest in its brand and network of stores with a next generation store concept launching in March 2019 in Richmond, B.C.
“Since the acquisition of Golf Town in 2016, we have invested in Canada on people, technology and our stores,” said Chad McKinnon, President of Golf Town. “This merger will accelerate that investment and open up new opportunities for our brand and our people, while maintaining the separate identity and teams of both brands.”