Nestlé-owned Swiss coffee brand Nespresso has been expanding its Canadian brick-and-mortar operations of the past several years, and it's not finished yet. According to Brand Manager Caroline Desvaux, Nespresso will look to expand its store base into Western Canada over the next two years, following solidifying its presence in Quebec and Ontario. Nespresso is working with brokerage Oakmont Real Estate Services for its Canadian store expansion.
Ms. Desvaux explained Nespresso's three store concepts: flagship 'boutique-bars' (selling food, coffee drinks as well as coffee makers/pods), mall-based boutiques (selling coffee makers/pods), and partner shop-in-stores. Nespresso currently operates two large boutique-bars -- its first opened on Montreal's Rue Crescent in 2009, and a spectacular 14,000 square foot Toronto location (designed by Italian firm Goring & Straja) followed in the fall of 2013 in a former theatre on Yorkville's Cumberland Street. Nespresso operates five freestanding mall stores -- at Yorkdale Shopping Centre and CF Sherway Gardens in Toronto, at CF Rideau Centre in downtown Ottawa, at CF Carrefour Laval in suburban Montreal, and at Place Ste-Foy in suburban Quebec City (which opened April 22 of this year, according to Maxime Frechette). Nespresso also operates eight shop-in-store locations at partner retailer Hudson's Bay, selling pods and coffee machines in downtown Vancouver, Edmonton (Southgate Centre), Calgary (CF Chinook Centre), Toronto (Queen Street flagship at CF Toronto Eaton Centre, Yorkdale), downtown Montreal and at suburban Quebec City's Laurier Quebec.
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Nespresso technically has a fourth store concept -- it operates a series of pop-up shops and at the moment, has them at Metropolis at Metrotown in Burnaby BC, CF Fairview Mall in Toronto, and at CF Galeries d'Anjou in Montreal.
Physical store locations provide the full Nespresso 'brand experience' according to Ms. Desvaux and because of this, they are critical to the brand's Canadian expansion. Nespresso stores provide a connection to consumers that keeps them coming back, as well as offering pod recycling to be environmentally friendly.
Moving forward, Nespresso is looking to enhance its presence in Western Canada according to Ms. Desvaux, following its reinforced Quebec and Ontario operations. An expansion won't happen right away, she said, though the company expects to operate stores there either in late 2017 or early 2018. Vancouver will be a key market, she noted, though it will depend on real estate opportunity whether or not BC's largest city sees a large boutique-bar like in Montreal and Toronto, or a smaller mall-based boutique. Calgary will be next on the list after Vancouver, likely seeing a mall store not unlike those at Yorkdale or CF Carrefour Laval.
According to Oakmont Real Estate Services, Nespresso is seeking retail space in the 2,000 to 3,000 square foot range, in malls and on high streets. Oakmont's Ben Labrecque (1-514-917-5015) and Jim Murdoch (1-514-831-2001) are the broker contacts for the brand in Canada.