Cana­dian Tire to test home de­liv­ery un­der new CEO

The Hamilton Spectator - - BUSINESS - FRANCINE KOPUN

TORONTO — Cana­dian Tire stores will be­gin test­ing home de­liv­ery later this year, one of many new ini­tia­tives out­lined at the com­pany’s an­nual gen­eral meet­ing on Thurs­day, the first since CEO Stephen Wet­more re­turned to lead the com­pany last year.

“We have no fewer than 30 ecom­merce ini­tia­tives un­der­way at the mo­ment, pro­vid­ing us crit­i­cal learn­ing on every­thing from search op­ti­miza­tion to web­site ex­pe­ri­ence to back-end ful­fil­ment op­tions,” Wet­more said at the meet­ing.

Cana­dian Tire stores of­fer only click and col­lect-in-store, although on­line shop­ping is avail­able at its other ban­ners, in­clud­ing Mark’s, Sport Chek, ProHockey Life and At­mos­phere.

Cana­dian Tire re­tail has been rel­a­tively late to the on­line game, a weak­ness in the com­pany’s over­all e-com­merce game, which Wet­more was pur­port­edly brought back to el­e­vate last year, re­plac­ing his suc­ces­sor, Michael Med­line.

Prof­its at the na­tional re­tailer jumped 26 per cent in its lat­est quar­ter, to $107 mil­lion, for the 13week pe­riod ended April 1, com­pared to $85.6 mil­lion for the same pe­riod a year ear­lier. Rev­enue climbed 7.6 per cent to $2.75 bil­lion.

The Toronto-based com­pany said the im­prove­ment came de­spite warmer weather in Jan­uary and Fe­bru­ary that hurt sales in out­er­wear, ac­ces­sories and boots and a cold start to spring that took a bite out of sales in bi­cy­cles, run­ning shoes and ca­sual cloth­ing.

Wet­more said Cana­dian Tire has spent the past eight months re­or­ga­niz­ing, in­clud­ing a re­newed fo­cus on prod­uct in­no­va­tion. A new con­sumer brands divi­sion has been tasked with cre­at­ing ex­clu­sive prod­ucts and has grown the owned brands port­fo­lio by $300 mil­lion. Cana­dian Tire has also be­gun to look at how to sell branded prod­ucts in­ter­na­tion­ally, Wet­more said. Do­mes­ti­cally, it will test sell­ing se­lect as­sort­ments from Mark’s and ProHockey life brand in Cana­dian Tire stores.

Cana­dian Tire CEO Stephen Wet­more

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