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Thursday, January 13, 2011

R.I.P. Zellers

  As a Canadian, I have a deep connection to Canadian things, and Zellers stores are among them. They were bought by the Hudson's Bay Company a decade back and I figured The Bay would keep them Canadian. But alas, I was wrong.

  Target stores bought out Zellers for 1.8 billion dollars today, which means a handsome profit for American-born owner Richard Baker who bought the entire HBC for $1.1 billion 2 years ago. Target plans to sell off the majority of Zellers' assets -including leases of stores to the Wal-Mart chain- and keep 100 or so to be turned into Target locations. Wal-Mart itself bought Woolco in 1994 and shut it down. It seems a good deal for Target and for Wal-Mart, as they get to eliminate a competitor that Canadians felt drawn to.

  While it seems odd for me to wax nostalgic over something like a store, it really isn't. I'm one of those people who would go out of my way to go to a Zellers versus Wal-Mart. The first roof I ever did was on a Zellers store but most of all, it just felt better to shop somewhere local. The Zellers store here is the sole light in the dingiest area of town- it will probably not become a Target store and fade into oblivion like the Woodward's that preceded it.


1 comment:

  1. I am glad Zellers is leaving Port Alberni, I called their customer service line and was put on hold for almost 1/2 hour and then the person on the line was in India. HBC bragged shamelessly about being an integral part of Canadian history then outsourced. Fuck em.


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