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Body Shop Canada in Talks

Published November 14, 2005
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CANADA: Body Shop Canada has been approached by a third party regarding divesting its franchise network, said Barry Waite, a spokesman for the company.
“It’s very preliminary,” Mr. Waite cautioned. “This is not the first time it’s been approached by a third party.” The name of the prospective buyer was not disclosed.
Under pressure from rivals such as Shoppers Drug Mart Corp., Wal-Mart Canada Corp., Costco Wholesale Canada Ltd. and Loblaw Cos. Ltd. that also sell natural products, the owners of the privately-held franchise system have wanted to sell Body Shop Canada for years, sources said.
However, the Canadian stores ring up sales of about $140 million annually and have “held up pretty steady,” said retail consultant Ed Strapagiel, Kubas Consultants, Toronto.

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