KaleMart24, the “Whole Foods Market” of convenience stores, has secured two leases to open its first two stores in September in Montreal.
KaleMart24 is being spearheaded by Oussama (Sam) Saoudi, who is the founder and CEO of Montreal-based Toro Beverages, which revolutionized the energy drink industry by introducing Canada’s first matcha-powered energy drink.
“KaleMart24 is breaking through the mold of c-stores being associated with junk food by offering healthier choices that cater to a mobile savvy younger generation. It is a natural convenience store chain that focuses on providing better-for-you products. It was founded in January 2023 with the vision of offering a convenient shopping experience for health-conscious millennials. The store combines the convenience of a traditional convenience store with the principles of a “Whole Foods Market”, catering to customers who prioritize healthy, natural, organic, and wholesome products,” said Saoudi.
“KaleMart24 offers a wide range of carefully curated products, including select fresh produce, natural and organic snacks, beverages, natural personal care items, pet care items and eco-friendly household products. The store emphasizes transparency and works closely with local and sustainable suppliers to ensure the highest quality standards. With a commitment to promoting healthier lifestyles, KaleMart24 will also provide resources and educational materials online to help customers make informed choices about their purchases.”
He said it was natural to launch KaleMart24 in Montreal because it is the company’s base and it’s a great city. Saoudi listed several reasons why the company is opening its first stores in the city:
1. Health-conscious population: Montreal has a population that values healthy living and embraces natural and organic products. There is a growing trend towards wellness and sustainability, making it an ideal market for a natural convenience store like KaleMart24. The city’s residents are likely to appreciate and support a store that caters to their health-conscious needs;
2. Diverse and multicultural city: Montreal is known for its cultural diversity, attracting residents from various backgrounds. This diversity brings with it a wide range of dietary preferences and health-conscious lifestyles. KaleMart24’s commitment to offering a diverse selection of better-for-you products would resonate with Montreal’s multicultural population;
3. Established local food scene: Montreal boasts a vibrant local food scene with numerous farmers’ markets, organic co-ops, and independent food producers. This creates opportunities for KaleMart24 to establish partnerships with local suppliers and showcase locally sourced products. The store can tap into the city’s existing network of sustainable agriculture and support the local economy;
4. Thriving urban lifestyle: Montreal is a bustling city with a strong urban lifestyle. Convenience is a key factor for individuals living busy lives, and KaleMart24’s concept of a natural convenience store aligns well with the needs of urban dwellers. By providing accessible, healthy options in convenient locations, KaleMart24 can cater to the demands of Montreal’s fast-paced lifestyle;
5. Supportive entrepreneurial ecosystem: Montreal has a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem with resources, support networks, and incubators that foster the growth of innovative businesses. This ecosystem can provide valuable support and guidance to KaleMart24 during its launch and early stages of operation;
6. Tourist attraction: Montreal is a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from around the world. By establishing a presence in the city, KaleMart24 can cater not only to local residents but also to health-conscious tourists seeking convenient and wholesome options during their stay; and
7. Environmental consciousness: Montreal places a strong emphasis on sustainability and environmental initiatives. KaleMart24’s commitment to responsible sourcing, eco-friendly products, and supporting local suppliers aligns with the city’s values and can help build a loyal customer base that appreciates these efforts.
“Considering these factors, launching KaleMart24 in Montreal presents an opportunity to tap into a health-conscious market, leverage the city’s diverse food scene, cater to the urban lifestyle, and align with the values and support of the local community,” said Saoudi.
He said KaleMart24 has signed leases to open its first two stores in September in the Berri-Uqam Metro Station and in the Jarry Metro Station.
“We aim to get to 30 stores by 2025 and to over 250 by 2030,” said Saoudi.
“We analyze the demographics of the area, including population size, income levels, and education levels. Look for locations with a significant population of health-conscious individuals who are likely to appreciate and patronize a natural convenience store. We assess the demand for better-for-you products in the area. Research local consumer preferences and trends, such as the popularity of organic or natural products. Look for areas with a growing interest in healthier lifestyles and a lack of convenient options for purchasing such products.
“We consider the accessibility of the location. Look for areas with high foot traffic, proximity to residential neighborhoods, office complexes, gyms, or universities. Easy access to public transportation facilities is also important to ensure convenience for customers. We evaluate the competitive landscape in the area. Identify existing convenience stores, grocery stores, or health food stores and assess their product offerings and customer base. Look for locations where there is limited direct competition or a gap in the market that KaleMart24 can fill.
“We consider the physical infrastructure of the location. Look for spaces that are suitable for a convenience store layout, with sufficient square footage for product displays, checkout counters, and storage. Also, ensure the availability of utilities, such as water, electricity, and internet connectivity.”
He said the concept of KaleMart24 resonates with consumers for several reasons.
In recent years, there has been a significant shift towards healthier lifestyles, with more individuals seeking natural and organic options KaleMart24 caters specifically to this growing segment of consumers who prioritize better-for-you products. By offering a wide variety of wholesome and nutritious options, the store addresses the increasing demand for healthier alternatives in the convenience store industry.
“Traditional convenience stores often lack healthy options, making it challenging for health-conscious individuals to find suitable products on-the-go. KaleMart24 bridges this gap by combining the convenience of a traditional convenience store with a focus on better-for-you products. This unique approach allows consumers to make healthier choices conveniently, even during busy schedules,” said Saoudi.
“Consumers today are more concerned about the sourcing and production processes behind the products they purchase. KaleMart24 places a strong emphasis on transparency, working closely with local and sustainable suppliers. This commitment to responsible sourcing resonates with consumers who value eco-friendly practices and want to support businesses that align with their values.”
He said KaleMart24 goes beyond just selling products. The online website will provide educational resources and materials to help customers make informed choices about their purchases. This commitment to customer education builds trust and loyalty among consumers, as they appreciate the opportunity to learn and make healthier decisions.
Overall, KaleMart24’s focus on providing better-for-you products, convenience, transparency, and education aligns with the evolving preferences and values of health-conscious consumers, making it a compelling concept in the market, he added.
Think Retail is working with KaleMart to grow the brand.
“The plan is to open several more locations in Montreal throughout 2023 and 2024, while looking to Toronto for further growth. The ideal store size ranges from 750 to 1,250 square feet in high-traffic areas with heavy pedestrian foot traffic, such as near Metro stations, train stations, airports, universities and high streets,” said Tony Flanz, CEO of Montreal-based Think Retail.