West 49 Inc. reports Back-To-School Sales



    
    Toronto Stock Exchange Symbol: WXX

    -   Company Achieves Sales Growth of 3.9% Amidst Very Challenging
        Retail Environment -
    

    BURLINGTON, ON, Sept. 25 /CNW/ - West 49 Inc. (TSX: WXX) (the "Company"),
Canada's leading action sport retailer, today reported sales results for its
fiscal 2009 Back-to-School selling period. Net sales for the five-week period
ended September 13, 2008 increased 3.9% to $32.2 million compared to $31.0
million for the corresponding period last year. The growth was attributable to
new stores opened since the Back-to-School period last year, as well as growth
in comparable store sales.
    Consolidated comparable store sales growth for the Back-to-School selling
period was 1.3%, with comparable store sales growth of 1.1% from the Company's
core West 49 banner, compared to the same period last year. For reference
purposes, the Company reported comparable sales increases of 0.6% on a
consolidated basis and 2.1% for the West 49 banner for the Back-to-School
selling season last year.
    "Our strategic focus on offering our customers relevant branded
merchandise at prices that are competitive both domestically and across the
border resulted in solid growth during what was one of the most challenging
Back-to-School retail environments in the history of our Company," said Sam
Baio, Chief Executive Officer of West 49 Inc. "Importantly, sales during the
critical two-week period immediately before and after the Labour Day were very
strong. In addition, the Back-to-School period saw the continued strengthening
of sales results in Ontario. Based on our success in strengthening our
competitive position, as well as in driving the number of units per
transaction through our incentive programs, we remain well positioned for the
second half of fiscal 2009."

    About West 49 Inc.

    West 49 Inc. is a leading Canadian multi-banner specialty retailer of
fashion and apparel, footwear, accessories and equipment related to music,
youth culture and action sports. The Company's stores, which are primarily
mall-based, carry a variety of high-performance, premium brand name and
private label products that fulfill the lifestyle needs of identified target
markets, primarily tweens and teens. As at July 26, 2008, the Company operated
134 stores in nine provinces, under the banners West 49, Billabong, Off The
Wall, Amnesia/Arsenic, D-Tox and Duke's Northshore, as well as two ecommerce
sites, www.shop.west49.com and www.boardzone.com. The Company's common shares
are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol WXX. The Company has
approximately 64 million shares outstanding.

    Forward-Looking Statements

    Information in this news release that is not current or historical
factual information may constitute forward-looking information. Implicit in
this information, particularly in respect of future operating results and
economic performance of the Company are assumptions regarding projected
revenue, gross margin and expenses. The assumptions, although considered
reasonable by the Company at the time of preparation, may prove to be
incorrect. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking information involves
known and unknown risks, uncertainties and numerous other factors that may
cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different
from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by
the forward-looking information, including without limitation accounting
adjustments and changes in accounting policies and methods. Accordingly,
investors should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The
Company includes in publicly available documents filed from time to time with
securities commissions and the Toronto Stock Exchange, a thorough discussion
of the risk factors that can cause anticipated outcomes to differ from actual
outcomes. Forward-looking information is provided as of the date of this news
release only, it should not be relied upon as of any other date, and the
Company assumes no obligation to update or revise this information to reflect
new events or circumstances, except as expressly required by law.





For further information:

For further information: Rhonda Biddix, Chief Financial Officer and
Corporate Secretary, West 49 Inc., (905) 336-5454 ext. 224, E-mail:
ir@west49.com; Trevor Heisler, Investor Relations, The Equicom Group Inc.,
(416) 815-0700 ext. 270, E-mail: theisler@equicomgroup.com

Organization Profile

WEST 49 INC.

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