By Craig Patterson
Toronto-based fashion brand Canada Goose, known particularly for its outerwear, has opened its first standalone Vancouver flagship at CF Pacific Centre as it expands its base of direct-to-consumer stores worldwide. Vancouver marks the 10th freestanding location for Canada Goose, which has a goal to operate 20 stores by the year 2020, with plans to open several more in Canada.
The Vancouver Canada Goose location spans 4,018 square feet according to a CF Pacific Centre lease plan, in a retail space located between the mall’s Links of London and Maje boutiques. The store is across from Harry Rosen and is near prestige brands Max Mara, Pomellato and a soon-to-reopen Ermenegildo Zegna boutique, which is operated by Harry Rosen.
Canada Goose’s new Vancouver location features an impressive interior — the store’s 2,700-pound cash desk is a rough slab of marble sourced from Vancouver Island (left mostly raw to evoke the natural wear of glaciers and icebergs according to the company), and pieces of Inuit art work are found in the store, including paintings depicting strong, nurturing Inuit women and northern landscapes as well as polar bear sculptures carved out of serpentinite. All artwork featured in the store is sourced in partnership with art curator Natalie MacNamara of NAMARA.
We've officially opened our Vancouver store at the CF Pacific Centre. The store features elements of our Arctic heritage, Indigenous artifacts & exclusive products, such as the Vancouver Toque.— Canada Goose (@CanadaGooseInc) November 2, 2018
Explore #CGxVancouver: https://t.co/t20Yl4ZbLm pic.twitter.com/CJadSeVpe4
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We're starting a new journey on the west coast, as we've officially opened our Vancouver store at the CF Pacific Centre. The store features visual elements highlighting our Arctic heritage, Indigenous art and artifacts on display and exclusive products including the Vancouver City Toque. . . Explore #CGxVancouver via link in bio.
The store carries more than 200 styles of clothing ranging from the brand’s popular parkas to rainwear, light down jackets and knitwear and accessories such as mittens, toques and scarves — there’s also an assortment of kid’s and baby items, as well as some limited-edition pieces (some collaborations) and exclusives not found at wholesalers.
Some wholesalers are said to be concerned that Canada Goose is opening retail stores, as it could result in less product and distribution as the brand increasingly sells direct-to-consumer. Canada Goose’s 4,500 square foot Toronto store at the Yorkdale Shopping Centre is said to do in excess of $60-million in sales annually, and lineups are a regular occurrence with a mix of brand fans and re-sellers, the latter which are limited to buying five jackets per day in the store.
Yorkdale was Canada Goose’s first standalone store in the world when it opened in October of 2016, and a store in New York City’s Soho area followed shortly after. The company has since opened standalone flagships in Calgary, Chicago, Boston, London UK, Tokyo, Short Hills NJ, and mosts recently in Hong Kong. The Calgary store, which is located at CF Chinook Centre, opened in the fall of 2017 and spans about 3,960 square feet. Similar to in Vancouver, the Calgary store is also located across from the mall’s Harry Rosen store.
Canada Goose has confirmed that it will be opening a flagship in downtown Montreal before the end of the year, in an 8,000 square foot retail space formerly occupied by music retailer HMV. The store will be only the second in the company to feature a ‘cold room’ where jackets can be tested in sub-zero temperature — the first was at Canada Goose’s recently opened store at The Mall at Short Hills in suburban New York City.
This fall, as well, Canada Goose will open a store in Beijing, as it further penetrates the Chinese market with direct-to-consumer stores. It will be interesting to monitor Canada Goose’s sales in its North American stores as it further expands into China — a substantial amount of sales in that store are from re-sellers taking orders from Chinese consumers, according to employees in the store. Canada Goose also launched an e-commerce presence on Alibaba’s Tmall platform, and will open a regional head office in Shanghai.
Several months ago, sources had said that Canada Goose had struck a partnership with landlord Cadillac Fairview to also open stores at CF Rideau Centre in Ottawa as well as at CF Carrefour Laval in Montreal, though this information is not confirmed and it’s unclear if a Laval location would open now that the company has announced a downtown Montreal flagship. A smaller unit at Toronto’s CF Sherway Gardens, set to open this fall, will be unique in that the store will take orders and product will be shipped to consumers. A CF Toronto Eaton Centre location is said to be in the works, and the Edmonton market is also said to be a target for Canada Goose and it’s unclear if lease talks have been finalized for a store at West Edmonton Mall.
Canada Goose also made news this week when it announced that it had acquired footwear manufacture Baffin Inc. for $32.5-million. The entities will initially be operated separately, though some speculate that Canada Goose could expand into branded footwear as part of the acquisition.