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Canada Goose's No-Inventory Store, Explained

Jayson Derrick

Apparel maker Canada Goose Holdings Inc (NYSE: GOOS) opened a new store in a Toronto mall which has zero inventory on hand. As strange as it may seem, the stores serves a greater purpose.

What Happened

Canada Goose named its Toronto store "The Journey" and visitors will try on a $1,000 jacket in a specialty designed 10 degrees Fahrenheit room. Granted, 10 degrees Fahrenheit is "warm" across many Canadian cities in the peak Winter season but the unique experience is meant to help consumers fall in love with the jacket.

Markus Giesler, an associate professor of marketing at York University's Schulich School of Business, told BNN Bloomberg companies need to re-think stores away from merely being a "point of purchase." In-store transactions take a back seat to arousing shoppers' interest.

Visitors to Canada Goose's store can place an order online and receive help from an employee.

"We are pushing the boundaries of traditional retail and experimenting to see how an inventory-free format, where experience comes first, works," BNN Bloomberg quoted Dani Reiss, Canada Goose's CEO as saying. "Brand awareness and customer engagement are key goals for the store."

Why It's Important

Reiss also said the new retail concept is "by no means an inexpensive experiment" but the company is "not going to learn if we don't experiment," according to the Financial Post. Canada Goose is also far from the first to offer an inventory-free story.

"You walk through the Crevasse and it separates you from the mall, the freneticness of that," he said. "You're entering a new world. You're entering the world of Canada Goose. You're entering the Arctic."

Canada Goose's new experience store won't be held to similar performance metrics as other stores. The store's ability to drive elsewhere will likely be followed by investors.

"I think people will purchase products online after they walk out of the store," the CEO also said. "I do think they will."

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