Rumours of the Canadian retail chain’s impending entry into a County Fair Mall space, currently occupied by Zellers, were fueled earlier this week when Giant Tiger announced a new location in New Glasgow, N.S.’s, Aberdeen Business Centre – a space that’s also currently in use by Zellers.
The parent company for Zellers, the Hudson Bay Company, announced earlier this year that its Summerside store was among 64 across the country that would close on March 14, 2013.
So is Giant Tiger looking at other Zellers leases like Summerside as avenues for expansion?
“At this point, no. It’s still a rumour,” said Giant Tiger’s marketing manager, Janie Aker.
“We look across the country all the time for new locations. The fact that a location came up that happened to be an old Zellers location, I think it was a complete coincidence. We look at all locations to make sure it fits our mold.”
“Everybody wants us there… that’s what we keep hearing, and we keep trying.” - Janie Aker, Giant Tiger spokesperson
The 64 Zellers stores were left in limbo last fall after the American department giant Target took over several other Zellers leases in a billion-dollar deal.
There are about nine years remaining on the County Fair Mall lease. The mall’s owner, Nova Scotia-based Crombie REIT, previously said it’s in no rush to replace its anchor tenant after the March 14 Zellers closure.
Giant Tiger is expected to open its New Glasgow store on Nov. 16, 2013.
If the company is eyeing more available Zellers leases, it’s staying mum for now.
“We would love to be out there (in P.E.I.),” said Aker. “Everybody wants us there… that’s what we keep hearing, and we keep trying.”