Health food and supplement store Body Energy Club has opened four new locations in British Columbia despite the COVID-19 pandemic which continues to be a challenge for the retail industry overall.
Three stores have opened in Vancouver and one in Burnaby bringing the chain’s total store count to 15 in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland with two in Los Angeles in Hollywood and in West Hollywood.
The company was founded in 2002 by Dominick Tousignant, who is originally from Shawinigan, Quebec. When he moved to Vancouver, he opened the first Body Energy Club store there. In 2015, the two stores in the United States opened.
“The first step is to give people what they want in these times and that’s catering to ‘every body’ and everybody, as we embrace all diet restrictions or food preferences,” said Tousignant.
He said the second step is to bank on the fact that people will frequent stores when assured of safe and happy experiences.
“We’ve seen it! Our customers appreciate that we didn’t change our prices to profit on essential immune supplements during the pandemic while other retailers did. We’re creating jobs, providing places to drop/call, and consult with in-store nutrition experts,” he added.
“We are a one-stop shop. When you come to our store you have the opportunity to buy a healthy smoothie packed with nutrients and protein, you can also buy cold-pressed juice, you can also buy healthy meals, wraps, snacks, nutritionally-balanced foods, and you can also buy vitamins and sports supplements.”
Tousignant said a wide range of demographics shop at the store from bodybuilders and fitness models to people who don’t regularly work out. And all ages.
“We’ve been growing quite fast,” he said. “We believe in the industry. We know now more than ever and in time people will realize even more you need to have your health, you need to look after yourself even more. So we took a leap of faith and opened up all these new stores we had committed to the previous year.”
The plan is to continue expansion within B.C. and then look at other provinces such as Alberta and Ontario.
“I think what people like about our stores is we are open seven days a week, every day of the year, every stat holiday. We only close on Christmas some locations but every other day we are open and we are open late. For example, our downtown stores open at 7 a.m. and they close at 10 p.m. People love the convenience.
“They’re not big stores. Usually about 1,100 square feet. The idea is we wanted to have convenient locations that are easy to access. Close to a gym. Close to other busy businesses.”