TORONTO — Canadian Tire Corp. Ltd. has signed a deal to buy Helly Hansen, a maker of sportswear and workwear based in Norway, for $985 million.Under the deal for the company controlled by the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, Canadian Tire also assume $50 million in debt.The retailer said outdoor and workwear are core products in its stores and it has had a long history with Helly Hansen as one of its largest customers.“For more than 10 years, Helly Hansen has been an exceptional fit with CTC and this acquisition will strengthen our assortment across all of our banners,” Canadian Tire chief executive Stephen Wetmore said in a statement.“With our capabilities and Helly Hansen’s trusted global brand and management team, we see tremendous opportunity for CTC and Helly Hansen, in Canada and internationally.”Helly Hansen CEO Paul Stoneham and the management team, based in Norway, are expected to continue to lead the business.“CTC provides us with the ideal platform to further accelerate our growth trajectory and also strengthen our Canadian presence. This is a great opportunity for Helly Hansen and our team,” Stoneham said.“As a Canadian, I am particularly proud to say that Canadian Tire is the new home for Helly Hansen.”The deal, which is expected to close in the third quarter of this year, was announced as Canadian Tire reported its first-quarter profit slipped compared with a year ago due to one-time accelerated depreciation charge.Canadian Tire reported a profit attributable to shareholders of $78 million or $1.18 per share for the quarter, down from $87.5 million or $1.24 per share a year ago.Revenue totalled $2.81 billion, up from $2.72 billion in the same quarter last year.Consolidated same store sales were up 5.2 per cent in the quarter as Canadian Tire gained 5.8 per cent, Mark’s added 3.4 per cent and FGL, which includes the Sport Chek banner, gained 3.9 per cent.
The warning came at the latest meeting of the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC), held in Paris, France, over the weekend, where health advocates were told that indoor air pollution had become the leading risk factor for “burden of disease” in South Asia while it was ranked second in Eastern, Central and Western Sub-Saharan Africa and third in Southeast Asia. “The estimations we have now tell us there are 3.5 million premature deaths every year caused by household air pollution, and 3.3 million death every year caused by outdoor air pollution,” Dr. Maria Neira, the WHO’s Director of Public Health and Environment, told the CCAC meeting.Ground-level ozone pollution was estimated to cause an additionally 200,000 premature deaths every year, the agency said in a press release, which notes that “burden of disease” is a calculation based on years of life lost combined with years lived at less than full health. “Air pollution is becoming one of the biggest health issues we have in front of us at the moment,” Dr. Neira said. The CCAC, whose partners include Member States and civil society health advocates, targets so-called short-lived climate pollutants, or SLCPs, as major culprits in the damage to health, as well as the cause of crop loss and climate change.SLCPs that are harmful to human health are released through numerous sources ranging from diesel engine exhaust and smoke and soot from inefficient cook stoves to leakage and flaring from oil and natural gas production and emissions from solid waste disposal. Pointing to cook stoves, for example, the UN health agency stated that many of those appliances emit carbon monoxide and other pollutants at levels up to 100 times higher than recommended limits. In a press statement marking the meeting, UNEP noted that fast action on SLCPs could “dramatically” reduce the number of annual deaths from air pollution. Efforts to lower black carbon emissions from heavy-duty vehicles and engines were receiving “particularly strong attention” from the CCAC. In addition, it added that the CCAC had already launched efforts to reduce black carbon and other pollutants from brick production through the adoption of modern technologies, which can lower the emission of pollutants by 10 to 50 per cent, while efforts to distribute clean cook stoves were already underway in Bangladesh.