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The giant letters over the entrance to Galyan's Trading Co. at the Walden Galleria have come down. A much shorter name has gone up -- Dick's.

The name change is the most obvious sign to customers that Dick's Sporting Goods has completed its acquisition of all 47 Galyan's stores, plus a few stores in various stages of opening. The Galyan's at the Galleria was among the first group of 11 stores to get the new name.

"We're starting in markets where both Dick's and Galyan's operated stores," Jeffrey R. Hennion, senior vice president of strategic planning for Dick's. "The ones that will be done in 2005 are markets where only Galyan's has stores."

By changing the name, Dick's can begin to operate these stores as a single brand.

"We're able to advertise one group of stores as opposed to having two different Sunday circulars," Hennion said.

While the name has changed, Dick's hasn't finished changing the merchandise mix in the former Galyan's.

"We really don't expect to have the full merchandise assortment converted until some time in the first half of next year," Hennion said.

Customers will begin to see women's sun dresses, bathrobes and Galyan's private self-named label disappearing from the shelves. In their places will be new lines such as Ativa, Walter Hagen, Highland Games and Quest, which are Dick's private labels.

Dick's, which is based in Pittsburgh, has not yet decided if one of its stores in Cheektowaga will close. Less than a mile from the mall, Dick's operates a store at 3637 Union Road. When Dick's announced the acquisition in June, the company's chairman, Ed Stack, said that some Dick's stores and some Galyan's stores would close where there is overlap.

Customers who have Galyan's gift cards, which do not expire, can still use them at any former Galyan's store. Eventually, shoppers will be able to use those cards at any Dick's store.

Dick's will transfer customers with a Galyan's "Reward Card" to its "Score Card." Both programs reward shoppers with points on various purchases, including one point for each dollar spent.

Dick's now operates 221 stores in 32 states, including five in the Buffalo area. Dick's has propelled itself from the seventh largest sporting goods retailer to the No. 3 position, behind Wal-Mart in first place and the Sports Authority, according to the National Sporting Goods Association. Dick's and Galyan's had combined revenue of $2.2 billion in fiscal 2003. In its most recent quarter ended July 31, Dick's profits increased 16 percent to $17.9 million. Total sales rose 18 percent and same-store sales rose 3 percent. The next quarter will includes sales from both Dick's and the former Galyan's.


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