Petland Looks to Expansion in Western Canada with 10,000 sq. ft. Store Footprints [Interview]

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Petland Canada is looking for retail space across Western Canada to expand the brand to different markets with a focus on British Columbia.

The retailer has 42 corporate stores plus five franchised locations in smaller markets. It is opening its 43rd store next summer in the Sevenoaks Shopping Centre in Abbotsford, BC.

Grant Kosowan

Grant Kosowan, President of Orange Group Commercial Real Estate Inc. which is overseeing real estate for Petland, said the company is looking for locations of about 10,000 square feet in power centres, grocery-anchored centres and high profile streetfronts.

Petland Canada Inc., is a privately held Canadian Corporation founded in 1975.

“BC is kind of the primary focus of growth. We’ve got pretty good coverage in Alberta and Saskatchewan and Manitoba but BC’s been a bit more of a challenging market for a variety of reasons. Looking for infill markets in the Prairies and solid growth in BC because we’re good for a couple of stores a year at least and want to keep pounding away,” said Kosowan.

Petland in Fort Saskatchewan (Image: Petland Canada)
Image: Petland Canada

Recently, Petland opened new locations in the Seton community in Calgary as well as Polo Park in Winnipeg.

“It’s not inconceivable that we could hit 60-70 locations in Western Canada. I certainly think there’s another 10-15 in BC that we could wind up doing and maybe a little bit infill in the Prairies. But once we start getting to low to mid 50s I think at some point in time we’ll start working our way towards Ontario that’s for sure,” he said.

The pet industry has seen significant growth in the past few years as more people have taken in pets and they’ve spent more money and time on their pets.

“These guys have been long-term players in the industry. They’ve been around for a long time,” said Kosowan. 

Petland Polo Park in Winnipeg (Image: Petland Canada)
Petland Polo Park in Winnipeg (Image: Petland Canada)

“Our focus is on corporate stores of 10,000 square feet in major markets. We’re a good player in that field. Not really interested in going to markets that are less than 30,000, 40,000 people.”

According to the Canadian government, the pet population in Canada has increased by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 0.4 per cent from 27.5 million pets in 2016 to 27.9 million pets in 2020.

“Retail sales of pet food in Canada has increased 5.8 per cent in CAGR from Can$3.4 billion in 2016 to Can$4.2 billion in 2020 and is expected to increase in CAGR by a further 4.9 per cent attaining Can$5.3 billion by 2025,” said the government.

Image: Petland Canada

The pet population is expected to grow from 28.1 million pets in 2021 to 28.5 million pets in 2025.

According to a report by market intelligence and advisory firm Mordor Intelligence, the Canadian pet food market is projected to register a CAGR of 6.8 per cent during the forecast period ( 2022-2027). 

“The COVID-19 pandemic affected the manufacturing and supply chain of the market due to the lockdowns and restrictions imposed. The worldwide restrictions on the movement of goods across countries and locally resulted in the manufacturers putting a halt to their production due to the lack of raw materials. On the other side, the demand for pet food has increased after the relaxation in restrictions as more people rely on pets during the lockdown period,” it said.

“The pet food market in Canada is a booming industry, with hundreds of pet stores across the country serving pet cats and dogs living in Canadian households. Canada has more than 2000 pet stores, with a major number in Ontario. Consumers have become progressively more concerned about the diets of their pets and spend on buying protein-rich, nutritious, and customized pet foods for their pets. Furthermore, they highly prefer natural and organic products. The factor that drives the market is pet refinement/humanization, which is influencing the purchase decisions, increasing the adoption of pets by elderly people, and increasing the trend of nuclear families.”

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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