Target opens doors to Canadian customers
GUELPH, Ont. - About a dozen shoppers lined up in cold, clear early-morning weather to get their first chance to browse the aisles of one of Target's first stores in Canada.
The number of visitors to the new Target store in Guelph, Ont., quickly grew to more than 100 shortly after the doors opened at 8 a.m.
The U-S. retailer opened in Guelph and two other nearby Ontario communities west of Toronto to serve as testing grounds for a phased rollout of the brand across much of the country later this year.
In the industry, it's called a "soft launch," but that lingo almost certainly won't keep shoppers away before the "grand opening" in early April.
Target Canada president Tony Fisher says it's "important that we can test and work out any of the bugs and kinks that we might find."
Another 21 stores will open this month throughout Ontario, although dates haven't been announced.
Overall, the company is expected to open between 125 and 135 locations in Canada.
After the Ontario rollout, Target will begin moving into western provinces throughout the year and eventually into Quebec.
None of those opening dates have been announced.