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Canadian Push 8-23-13



Canada's selection isn't deep and yes the prices are higher - Pirate Joe's in Vancouver stocks his store with Trader Joe's goods  Trader Joe's is suing Vancouver's Pirate Joe's small grocery store for buying $22,000 a month in their product in U.S. stores and selling it in his store with a $2 markup. The owner renamed his store "Irate Joe's". (Source

Wal-Mart workers in Weyburn, Sask., vote to dump union
Chain's only remaining union in Canada never achieved collective bargaining deal. Workers at Canada's only unionized Wal-Mart, in Weyburn Sask., have voted 51-5 to decertify their union. After a decertification drive was launched at the store and employees voted on that, the union argued the process was unfair and sought to block the votes from being counted. But on Thursday, after the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the union's application to deal with the case, the way was cleared for the count to be held. The Weyburn decertification drive was the latest chapter in the fight between Wal-Mart and the union that's been going on for nine years. Two other Canadian Wal-Marts have been certified in the past: the store at St. Hyacinthe, Que., and a store at Jonquière, Que. However, employees at the Hyacinthe outlet later voted to decertify, and Wal-Mart closed the Jonquière store. (Source

Canadian shoppers not impressed with Target
Canadian shoppers aren’t wowed by Target Corp., according to a customer-satisfaction rating survey by Forum Research. As reported in The Globe and Mail, the survey ranked Target at the bottom of a list of major retailers operating in Canada. (Satisfaction as measured by the survey relates to service, prices and/or merchandise offering.) Over all, Target scored a mean 2.7 out of 4, compared with Costco’s 3.5, Wal-Mart’s 3.1 and a 3.2 average. Shoppers complain that Target stores have been short on inventory and that prices are higher than those at outlets across the border, the report said. (Source

Target not delivering the deals customers expected: experts  After a recent customer-satisfaction survey found Target is floundering in the eyes of Canadian consumers, experts are suggesting the disappointment might be the result of too much early hype over the American retail giant. There was a huge buzz among consumers when Target opened its first Canadian stores in March. But a survey released by Forum Research suggests the new locations have not lived up to initial expectations for many bargain-hunters. Part of the problem, according to Gray, is that Target cannot match its American pricing in Canada. But a bigger problem is that they've still got some kinks to work out in their distribution and inventory and there's been a number of cases of empty shelves and stock shortages," Gray said. (Source

Sears Canada to Cut 245 Head-Office Type Jobs
Sears Canada Inc. (SCC.T) said Tuesday that it is cutting 245 head-office type positions, mainly in information technology and finance. The Toronto-based company, a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD), said the bulk of the cuts--201 positions--are in the Toronto area. It said it plans to transfer the work being done by these employees to external providers while it focuses on its core retailing business. The company had already cut 700 jobs across Canada early this year. (Source

Cargo thieves make off with tractor trailer filled with shampoo and mouthwash in Hamilton, On.  It may not be a high-stakes diamond heist, but thieves in Hamilton, Ont., have pulled off a remarkable crime, driving away with over $15,000 worth of goods from a trucking business in Hamilton over the weekend. The theft occurred at a commercial trucking business between midnight and 6 a.m. on Aug. 16. The suspect or suspects came in through the unlocked and unguarded gate and stole a blue Freightliner truck with which they hauled away the loot. (Source

Retail sales fell 0.6% in June to $40.1 billion, Statistics Canada says
Statistics Canada says retail sales fell 0.6 per cent in June to $40.1 billion, which partially offset a large gain in May. The biggest decrease in dollar terms was a 1.2 per cent drop at food and beverage stores, with weaker sales reported by all types of stores in this subsector. Statistics Canada says retail sales in the first six months of 2013 were still up 1.8 per cent compared to the same period last year. (Source

Fashion retailer Marshalls opening stores in Alberta, Quebec
Marshalls is opening its first stores in Quebec and Alberta on Thursday, with the two locations in each province and another store in Toronto raising the chain's Canadian store count to 27. The retailer, whose sister companies include Winners and Homesense in Canada, and T.J. Maxx in the U.S. Marshalls is among the U.S. retailers that are expanding their presence in Canada. Target is set to open its first of 25 planned stores in Quebec this fall after having already rolled out dozens elsewhere in the country. Marshalls is owned by TJX Companies, which operates more than 3,000 stores, including 222 Winners and 88 Homesense locations in Canada as of the end of 2012. The parent company says it believes Canada can support 90 to 100 Marshalls stores in the long term. (Source

Close to 40% of Canadians haven't started back-to-school shopping
Many Canadians will wait until the last minute to shop for back to school according to a new poll released today by Walmart Canada. As of mid-August, only 61% of shoppers had started back-to-school shopping. According to the nationwide survey the average customer will do the bulk of their shopping closer to the first day of school and in the three weeks following the start of school. (Source

Phone scam targets Shoppers Drug Mart customers nationwide - still ongoing
A telephone scam that's sweeping the nation. The calls appear to originate from local numbers. Once answered, a recorded message tells recipients that they've won a free trip from Shoppers Drug Mart. Individuals are then connected to a live operator who asks for their credit card information. RCMP in New Brunswick are referring scam victims to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. (Source

Retail Fast Facts: July 2013


Total monthly retail sales changed by 4.3 percent over the comparable month last year.
Total sales excluding food, automotive and gasoline changed by 4.1 percent over the comparable month last year. (Source


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