RICHMOND, VA-Its push to multichannel retailing and the downsizing of its merchandise is leading to changes in the configuration of Circuit City Stores, executives said at its fourth quarter conference call.

In new and reconfigured stores, more space is being allocated to the company’s firedog services division, while cutting back space for music and movies, and even to televisions and other consumer electronics as they shrink in size.

“We continue to right-size our latest retail concepts for today’s multichannel shopping experience,” said Philip J. Schoonover, chairman, president and CEO.

The company expects to add 60 to 65 new and relocated superstores in the coming year and up to 100 more per year beginning in fiscal 2009. Of the 2007 units, 17 to 19 will be relocations of existing stores.

“Our national footprint has fallen behind our national competitor. That’s good and bad news,” Schoonover said. The failing, he said, will allow the chain to change “our experience and our footprint all at the same time.”

For the fourth quarter ended Feb. 28, net sales were $3.93 billion, up 1.2% from the same period last year. Consolidated comparable store sales declined 0.5% from the prior year. The company reported a loss of $15.2 million, compared with net earnings of $148 million, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2006.

Net sales for the fiscal year were $12.43 billion, up 8.0% from the prior year. Consolidated comparable store sales rose 5.8%. The net loss from continuing operations was $13.7 million, compared with net earnings of $147.4 million, in the prior year.

As of Feb. 28, Circuit City’s domestic segment operated 642 Superstores and 12 other locations. Its international segment operated through 510 retail stores and 296 dealer outlets in Canada.

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