Mountain Equipment Co-op sold to private U.S. investment firm

Click to play video: 'Loyal fans unhappy over MEC’s sale to U.S. firm' Loyal fans unhappy over MEC’s sale to U.S. firm
WATCH: Canada is losing another homegrown retailer to a foreign company, with MEC (Mountain Equipment Co-op) being sold to U.S. investment firm Kingswood Capital Management. Mike Drolet explains how the sale will change the store, and why it was already in trouble long before the pandemic – Sep 15, 2020

Iconic Canadian outdoor retailer Mountain Equipment Co-op has been sold.

The business said Monday that its board of directors unanimously approved a deal in which a Los Angeles-based private investment firm called Kingswood Capital Management will acquire its assets, including the majority of its retail stores.

Click to play video: 'Mountain Equipment Co-op losing money for first time' Mountain Equipment Co-op losing money for first time
Mountain Equipment Co-op losing money for first time – Nov 28, 2019

As part of the deal, MEC will no longer operate as a member-owned cooperative.

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It was granted protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act, allowing it to continue operating while the transaction and other elements of the plan are completed.

The transaction remains subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Read more: MEC eliminates 200 positions as pandemic drags on

MEC was founded in Vancouver in 1971, and currently has more than five million members and 22 stores across Canada.​

In July, it announced it was making 200 frontline staff layoffs permanent because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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