Hart Stores opens its 80th store with the expansion of four new locations


    LAVAL, QC, March 11 /CNW Telbec/ - Hart Stores Inc. (HIS:TSX), an
operator of mid-sized department stores, announced today the opening of four
new stores in three provinces and the re-opening of its Charlesbourg store in
    The Company will open a new location in Caraquet, New Brunswick on
March 12th. On the following day, a second store will open in Sault Ste Marie,
Ontario and the Charlesbourg, Québec location that was temporarily closed at
the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2008 will also reopen. A 13th store in
Ontario will open on March 27th in the city of Simcoe, and on April 24th, the
80th store will open in the city of St. John's, Newfoundland, under its larger
store format with approximately 42,000 square feet. The Company is also
closing a store in early April as the lease term will expire. The total net
addition is approximately 130,000 square foot. Other location openings are
planned for Fall and these will be announced later in the year.
    Hart Stores President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Hart said: "We
continue to expand according to our strategic growth plans and now with
80 stores we are confident that we will be able to achieve 100 stores in
operation by the end of fiscal 2012. The addition of these new locations will
continue to provide efficiencies in our distribution and marketing operations
as well as increase our purchasing volume which will further continue to
improve earnings."

    About Hart Stores Inc.:

    Hart Stores Inc. operates a network of 80 mid-sized department stores
under the Hart, Bargain Giant and Géant des Aubaines banners. The stores are
located in secondary and tertiary markets throughout Eastern Canada where the
Company has established a dominant position in many of the communities that it
serves. The stores offer an extensive and differentiated selection of national
and exclusive fashion apparel brands as well as family footwear, home
furnishings, electronics, appliances, giftware, toys and seasonal goods.

    Forward-looking statements:

    Certain statements included in this press release may constitute
"forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Canadian securities
legislation and regulations. Such forward-looking statements involve
assumptions, known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may
affect our ability to implement our strategies and plans, which could cause
actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied
by such forward-looking statements. You should not place undue reliance on
these forward-looking statements, which are made only as of the date of this
press release. We refer you to the Company's filing with the Canadian
securities regulatory authorities for a discussion of other factors and risks
that may affect the Company's future results.
    %SEDAR: 00004123EF

For further information:

For further information: Mr. Jacques Plante, VP-Finance & Chief
Financial Officer, Hart Stores Inc., (450) 661-4155, jplante@hartstores.com,

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