The CEO of popular large-format Quebec City-based fashion retailer La Maison Simons has revealed that it will open two Toronto stores, joining a location already under construction in Mississauga. Simons is spending in excess of $200 million to open eight locations over the next three years, eventually operating as many as 25 stores nationally.
According to the Montreal Gazette, Simons' CEO Peter Simons said that the retailer will open locations at Toronto's Yorkdale Shopping Centre, as well as at Scarborough Town Centre. Store sizes and opening dates are yet to be determined. Simons will also open a 113,000 square foot location at Square One in Mississauga in the spring of 2016, and all three malls are under the ownership umbrella of landlord Oxford Properties.
Mr. Simons recently told us that he was still interested in opening a downtown Toronto store, though negotiations to open at the Toronto Eaton Centre had stalled. He also said that he could open a second Calgary location at Oxford Property-owned Southcentre, joining a recently announced downtown Calgary Simons store. Sources say that Simons may have leased a second Vancouver-area store, and that the retailer is looking to eventually operate as many as four stores in the Vancouver area.
If Simons secures space at Calgary's Southcentre, it will be the sixth Oxford-owned mall to feature the retailer. Oxford Properties currently operates 11 shopping centres across Canada.
Simons is spending in excess of $200 million on its store expansion, according to the Montreal Gazette. Its next location opens in August, measuring about 80,000 square feet at Les Promenades Gatineau, north of Ottawa. On October 15, Simons will open a 100,000 square foot location at West Vancouver's Park Royal. In 2016 it will open the Mississauga location as well as a 100,000 square foot store at Ottawa's Rideau Centre. In 2017, Simons will open a 92,000 square foot location at The CORE in downtown Calgary, as well as a second Edmonton location, measuring about 100,000 square feet, at Londonderry Mall. Simons' first location outside of the province of Quebec opened at West Edmonton Mall in October of 2012.
Several months ago, Mr. Simons told us that he envisions up to 20 locations for Canada. In last week's Montreal Gazette article, he indicated that this number could be as high as 25.
Founded in Quebec City in 1840, La Maison Simons is unique in how it pairs its substantial private-label fashion with a handful of higher-priced designers. Despite its large floorplates, Simons stores lack cosmetics departments and the large footwear areas typical in similar-sized department stores. Simons currently operates nine stores, including eight in the province of Quebec and one in Edmonton. The company has over 2,000 employees. The company's 2014 revenues were in excess of $300 million, according to Mr. Simons, with projections for $400 million plus "in the next year or two".