Thousands of small retailers to benefit from industry research
TORONTO, June 2 /CNW/ - The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Secretary of State
(Small Business and Tourism), will officially launch Independent Retail: A
Changing Landscape at STORE 2008 - Canada's Retail Conference. This yearlong
initiative, driven by Retail Council of Canada and Scotiabank Small Business,
will discover and recommend solutions for the challenges affecting Canada's
independent retailers in urban and rural communities.
Chaired by Paul Simmonds, President of Robert Simmonds Clothing in
Fredericton, N.B., the task force driving this project for RCC will include
representatives from across Canada. "I'm excited to be a part of this
initiative," says Simmonds. "As an independent retailer myself, I know there
can be obstacles to success. What we need to know is what's happening in the
industry now and how to stay ahead of the game. Bringing independents together
is a great way to build support for the entire independent retailer
Research for Independent Retail: A Changing Landscape
(www.independentretailer.ca) will include regional Town Hall meetings designed
to bring independent retailers together, as well as a nationwide survey
sponsored by RCC and Scotiabank Small Business. RCC will then use the
information gathered to create free statistics and resources for independent
"At Scotiabank, we understand the importance of retailers to the Canadian
economy," says Kyle McNamara, Head, Small Business, Scotiabank. "Identifying
challenges, solutions and opportunities, as well as delivering relevant advice
and services, helps business owners reach their goals."
2008 Town Hall meeting schedule:
August 25 - Fredericton, NB September 25 - Winnipeg, MB
August 26 - Halifax, NS October 14 - Edmonton, AB
September 24 - Toronto, ON October 15 - Vancouver, BC
Independent retail is one of Canada's leading industries. More than 90 per
cent of all Canadian retailers own only one store, with the same number having
sales less than $2 million and fewer than 50 employees. Independent Retail: A
Changing Landscape is a resource designed to help merchants spot future
obstacles and understand the trends that are driving the industry.
Task force members include:
Paul Simmonds, President Fred Pritchard, CGA, Vice-President
Robert Simmonds Clothing Golda's Kitchen
Fredericton, NB Mississauga, ON
Carole Didier, President Diane Petryna, President
Entrée Lifestyles Take A Hike!
Victoria, BC Thunder Bay, ON
Ron Pradinuk, President Betsy Thomas, President
Journey's Travel & Bummis Inc.
Leisure SuperCentre Montreal, QC
Kevin Graff, President Sandra Avery, Owner
The Graff Retail Group A Special Touch
Oakville, ON St. John's, NL
Retail Council of Canada (www.retailcouncil.org) is the Voice of Retail.
It is a not-for-profit association representing more than 40,000 stores of all
retail formats, including independent merchants, regional and national mass
and specialty chains, and online merchants. More than 80 per cent of RCC's
members are independent retailers.
For further information:
For further information: Sarah Ryeland, Independent Retail Project
Coordinator, (416) 922-6678 ext. 224, toll-free: (888) 373-8245,