A message in a chat group was the first indication for a Regina woman that hundreds of dollars of gift cards she bought for Christmas presents were now worthless.
Brooklyn Leibel bought two gift cards – worth $100 and $200 – from accessories store Spareparts at Regina’s Cornwall Centre on Dec. 8.
“They asked if they were for Christmas presents, and I was like ‘yup.’ And I asked just to make there was no expiry dates, and they were like ‘no, not at all.’ They said all gift cards don’t expire so I can use them anytime.”
Four days later, the store was closed.
The Saskatoon-based retail chain filed for protection from its creditors in October and has since gone into receivership.
While the Regina location closed, there are still at least two locations open – one in Saskatoon and one in British Columbia. Leibel said she’s contacted both to ask if she’d be able to use the gift cards there.
“Both locations denied, saying that they are in receivership so they’re no longer allowed to use gift cards.”
Accounting firm KPMG took over control of the company’s assets and operations and stopped honouring gift cards as of Dec. 12.
“You know when a business is about to close. They might have not known the exact end date, but they knew it was near end and they continued to sell them,” said Leibel, adding she’s currently working as an intern.
“I don’t really have much of an income, so knowing I threw $300 in the garbage … (it’s) super devastating.”
There is a bit of a silver lining for Leibel though.
She wrote a Facebook post about what happened, and she said Suds Carwash in Regina saw it and has offered her a $100 gift card to help make up for what happened.