Golfsmith files for bankruptcy

Specialty retailer Golfsmith has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and announced the related sale of its Canadian business, Golf Town.

Golf Town has been sold to a group led by Fairfax Financial Holdings and Signature Global Asset Management, a division of CI Investments. There are 55 Golf Town stores in Canada.

That transaction will help Golfsmith repay debts as it works toward restructuring and exiting Chapter 11.

Golfsmith is the largest seller of golf equipment and apparel in North America, but participation in the sport has been shrinking and sporting goods retailers have suffered in general. Sports Authority is the most recent casualty; after failing to exit Chapter 11 or find a buyer, the retailer was forced to liquidate.

This latest retail bankruptcy further impacts related brands Nike and Under Armour, which are both vendors to national chains and merchants that operate stand-alone stores.