Canadian specialty golf retailer Golf Town has agreed to buy American specialty retailer Golfsmith International for about $97m, more than doubling its store base and significantly expanding its presence in the US.

The latest transaction between the two firms will result in the creation of the world’s largest specialty golf retailer.

Golfsmith has 85 retail locations in the US and sells golf equipment and related apparel and accessories through its internet site and various catalogs, as well.

Golf Town, which is owned by OMERS Private Equity, operates 54 stores across Canada and seven stores in the greater Boston area.

Omers Private Equity senior managing director and Canadian country head Don Morrison said this transaction will give the firm a formidable footprint in North America and will also provide a strong platform for future growth.

"Together with management we look forward to enhancing the value proposition for the companies’ loyal customers," Morrison said.

Golf Town interim CEO Ron Hornbaker said together, the businesses will have a broad multi-channel offering of retail, online, mobile and catalog throughout North America.

Upon the closing of the transaction, Golfsmith CEO Martin Hanaka will assume the role of CEO of the combined company, while Sue Gove will become its president and COO.

The closing of the acquisition, which is subject to limited closing conditions, is likely to occur in the third quarter of 2012.

Texas-based GolfSmith’s fourth quarter net loss narrowed marginally to $5.6m from $5.7m, but net revenues grew 2.3% to $74.5m.