T&T Supermarkets to Open 4 Stores as Retailer Expands Throughout Canada: CEO Tina Lee Interview

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T&T Supermarkets is continuing its aggressive expansion across the country with plans to open two new stores in Western Canada over the next year.

The new stores will be located in the Sage Hill northwest neighbourhood in Calgary – the fourth store in the Alberta city – and in Coquitlam.

They follow recent announcements of the opening of new locations in Toronto at CF Fairview Mall and the brand’s first store in Montreal.

And there’s more to come.

The new Coquitlam store is expected to open in late 2022 (CNW Group/Loblaw Companies Limited)
T&T Supermarket CEO, Tina Lee.
T&T Supermarket CEO, Tina Lee.

“T&T stores have increasingly become a community gathering place, where customers go to get out of the house, enjoy the shopping experience, and bump into old friends,” said Tina Lee, CEO of T&T Supermarkets, the largest Asian supermarket chain in the country, and under the Loblaw Companies umbrella. 

“We are excited to bring this experience to the local community in northwest Calgary, with our Sage Hill location, as well as the growing communities of Lougheed, Burquitlam, and the students of Simon Fraser University with our new Coquitlam location.”

Lee said the two new stores will bring its total count to 33 locations across Canada.

“We’re having a lot of fun and we’re really confident in our store model and the impact we can make to a new community. The total of four (new stores) coming together is really exciting and it’s a really great pace for us,” said Lee.

T&T Supermarkets coming to CF Fairview Mall in Winter 2022 (CNW Group/Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited)

Are there more to come?

“I hope so. I certainly hope so. I want to invite landlords, real estate developers to keep T&T in mind as they build out their portfolios,” she said.

The new stores are typical footprints for the brand at more than 40,000 square feet with the exception of the Montreal store which is 70,000 square feet.

“What’s interesting about (the expansion) is that there’s four stores and one in each province,” said Lee. 

The new Calgary store at 10 Sage Hill Plaza will open in December while the Coquitlam store, located at the intersection of Lougheed and King Edward at 1085 Woolridge Street, is also expected to open in late 2022 and will be the second location serving the local community. 

“Sage Hill is in northwest Calgary and our next closest store is in Harvest Hills and we can just tell from talking to our customers that northwest Calgary has got a lot of new development, a lot of new homes, really good schools and over the past five years I’d say we’ve seen a lot of residents move into that part of town,” said Lee. “We just had a lot of customer requests and so we finally found a site and it’s reflective of the community that lives there.

T&T Supermarket at Willowbrook Shopping Centre

“Coquitlam is nestled between an IKEA and a McDonald’s. The exact address of Woolridge is not a very familiar street name but it’s basically on the corner of Lougheed Highway and King Edward. Most people in the community know where IKEA is and we really like that location because it’s close to Lougheed mall. There’s wonderful access for the Burquitlam community and also we’re much closer to the students at Simon Fraser University and we know that there’s a lot of residents in that community that have to drive more than 15-20 minutes to get to our store in North Coquitlam or the next closest store is Metrotown. It’s a really dense community with a lot of development in and around Lougheed that now we’re finally able to better service with this location.”

Robert Sawyer, Chief Operating Officer, Loblaw Companies Limited, said the opening of four new T&T locations over the next year is a testament to T&T’s thriving business, as Canadians embrace new flavours and trends, while also seeking the traditional foods and comforts of home.

“We’re proud of the T&T Supermarkets team for what they’ve been able to accomplish and look forward to supporting the business’ growth in the future,” he said. 

T&T Supermarkets has stores in British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario. It  offers customers a selection of Asian products including a wide variety of fresh produce, meat, seafood, grocery items, daily baked breads, and ready-to-eat meals.  

It was founded in Vancouver in 1993 and is now led by second generation successor and CEO, Lee.  T&T Supermarkets is headquartered in Richmond, BC, with offices in Toronto.

Article Author

Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary, has more than 40 years experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist, and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, faith, city and breaking news, and business. He is the Senior News Editor with Retail Insider in addition to working as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training. Mario was named as a RETHINK Retail Top Retail Expert in 2024.

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