On Target!

This morning papers were abuzz with big story of Target finally finding its way to Canada. Even though Canadians have been familiar with the retailer for over half a decade, Target did not have a direct presence in Canada. But with a cool $1.8 billion deal with Zellers for 220 stores spread across Canada, probably Target got the best chance to make it big, taking lead from other US peers.

Big Investment:Target is expected to spend another $1 Billion on renovating and refurbishing 100-150 stores to brand them in Target Stores. The first store is expected to open in 2013. Target is expected to add thousands of retail jobs through this acquisition. A typical U.S. store employs between 150 to 200 people, meaning tens of thousands of jobs will be created, it said.

End of another Canadian Retailer:On the other hand, the Target acquisition may mark the beginning of the end for Zellers, founded by Walter P. Zeller in 1931 as a store for thrifty Canadians. Canada’s second biggest mass-market retailer has struggled to compete the likes of Wal-Mart and Costco in recent years though it does have deep rooted community links in Canadian market. Surely some of the loyal customers going to miss it from Canadian retail scene for some time.

Target’s Brand Equity: Interestingly when I spoke to some colleagues and friends if what they expect from Target now that it is only a matter of time when it starts selling in Canada, most of them reacted positively. The cost competitiveness with a Better shopping experience is what they look for. The same things were highlighted by Target CEO in a recent interview. Another thing a friend mentioned was how American retail chains such as Costco, Wal-Mart, Best Buy etc have mastered the art of retailing compared to Canadian Retailers who doesn’t seem to be a match, at least against big box top of the line giants!

Good Pay Master! Also it seemed better employee pay and perks is something that interested one of the person who works with a local Canadian retailer. It makes sense for sure what with Target purchase going to create thousands of retail jobs.

Shyam Verma, PMP, ITIL
Program & portfolio mgnt professional
LinkedIn:spverma. Twitter: Shammy11