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News on retail chains (was: New Mall Retail)


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Jan 15, 2011
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To the folks surprised there isn't more high end retail in the core ... why is that such a big surprise ? I won't comment on how much retail there, rather the "increase in it". Now even with all the people moving into the core I'd argue very few of these are at the very high end of the spectrum. Lots of middle and upper middle class, folks that couldn't afford to step foot in many of these stores. You may argue, what about the luxury condos ? I'd argue many of those folks were already in the core or close to it and already shopping in the vicinity.

Also keep in mind there has been a lot of new non-high end retail throughout the core, namely due to retail space in condo developments.
I doubt very much that retailers in Yorkville are trying to cater to the influx of 30 somethings moving into the core and living in 400 sq. ft. condos, so I would agree with you on that point. Bloor/Yorkville's appeal is to the small percentage of people who buy thousands of dollars of stuff at a time, whether they live in the core or not, plus tourists who will shop at these places when they visit Toronto. As has been pointed out many times in these threads, malls have one property manager which can consolidate its efforts into expansions, lease negotiations, and long term strategy. The BIA's don't have this so it takes longer to close deals in neighbourhoods like Yorkville. Retailers may not want to wait that long if another option exists to get into the market.


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Apr 24, 2007
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I think a lot of malls are going higher end strictly due to competition. I remember someone at Cadillac-Fairview saying part of the reason Markville was renovating was because better stores were going to Oxford's STC. Some comments about the 416 having its malls and the 905 theirs, I think miss the point. Markville is also a good example because the Downtown Markham development is looking for 2 million square feet of retail, which is twice the size of Markville and only a few KMs away. It either improves or dies.

In general, I expect more high-end stores in parts of the 905 in coming years. Too many million+ homes are being sold for this not to happen eventually. The "rich are moving to the core" is really a 416 phenomenon.


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Apr 25, 2007
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East of this, west of that
Farm Boy is quite good, and it would be great if they expanded into Toronto. Unfortunately, they tend to favour suburban, car-centric locations.

Local grocery chain Farm Boy going national
Published Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012 2:47PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012 2:53PM EST
Local grocery chain Farm Boy is going national.

The local-focused retailer says an investment from a new North American partner is behind the expansion.

There are currently 13 stores in Ottawa, Cornwall and Kingston with a new location in the works for Ottawa’s Trainyards.

The deal will be formally announced next week.

Farm Boy set to triple its size in 5 years

Grocer brings in private equity partner to spur national expansion

By Teresa smith, Ottawa Citizen November 6, 2012

OTTAWA — Ottawa grocer Farm Boy appears to be looking to cultivate new markets.

Chief executive Jeff York said Tuesday night that an influx of cash from a “private equity partner” will allow the company to expand across Canada.

The deal, which is expected to be announced publicly next week, would bring an undisclosed amount of money in from a new “North American” partner.

York, who came to Farm Boy from Giant Tiger with a mission to “grow the company”, said late Tuesday evening that the leadership of the grocery chain will remain the same, with the new partner joining the Bellemare family, and York remaining at its helm.

“Everything’s going to get better,” said York. “We’re going to have more (locations), and we’re going to have a lot of capital to grow Farm Boy across Canada.”

York would not identify the new partner — or how much money would be involved — but he said the partner is not from the Ottawa area.

“They’re from North America,” York said.

He did say, however, that the money will allow Farm Boy to expand, creating “more jobs and a bigger Canadian footprint.”

“Each time we open a store, it’s 120 jobs, minimum,” said York.

“We’re at 1,700, so, hopefully in five years we’ll have 5,000 employees — that would be an admirable goal.”

Despite its growth, York said the company remains committed to its original business model as a “fresh-food retailer.”

Farm Boy says it deals directly with local growers and suppliers to provide organic and unusual varieties of produce not found elsewhere.

With the new money, York says Farm Boy will be able to offer its wares to more Canadians.

“This is what every company wants to have,” said York. “Owners that want to aggressively grow companies, ’cause if you’re not moving forward today, you’re moving backwards.”

Farm Boy Inc., which began in 1981 as a small produce stand in Cornwall, has been aggressively expanding in the past year, with more locations in the works.

Last month, the company opened its 13th location in Kingston. The 14th is planned for the spring of 2013 in Ottawa’s Trainyards shopping district.

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