468 Retail and Channel Management Blog

Monday, February 6, 2017

TOPSHOP: A Neighbour to Canada's Iconic Department Store

Since launching in 1964, UK based Topshop has become the lead of the international fast fashion movement, offering fashion-forward consumers with affordable pieces based off current catwalk trends. With over 300 stores in the UK, Britan’s high-street style champion also operates in 37 other countries around the world. Topshop came to Canada in 2011, opening its first 15,000 square foot store inside Hudson’s Bay in Toronto’s Yorkdale Mall.
In Canada, The Hudson’s Bay Company owns franchise rights for Topshop, including the rights for shops within stores as well as stand alone stores. Topshop currently has 18 stand alone stores in Canada (all of which are either connected or in close proximity to Hudson’s Bay) and 4 “temporary” stores which are Topshop sections inside Hudson’s Bay.
Topshop in Yorkdale Mall, Toronto
Having Topshop located next to Hudson’s Bay ultimately benefits both companies. The Hudson’s Bay Company has been trying to reposition itself since the owner of Saks Fifth Avenue purchased it in 2008 and Topshop adds a youthful and hip vibe to the department store, something of which I personally think it was lacking. Moreover, Topshop introduces Hudson’s Bay to many new and younger customers due to its up-to-the-minute, entry-level fashion and affordable prices. From Topshop’s point of view, The Hudson’s Bay being so iconic in Canada’s history makes it easy for the company to quickly penetrate the Canadian market. Also, having Topshop alongside Hudson’s Bay’s flagship stores, which are located in the high-traffic areas of Canada’s biggest cities, ensures great exposure to the Canadian public.
Aside from being placed with Hudson’s Bay, Topshop stores themselves are very appealing to the eye and not to mention, huge! When I visited my first Topshop store in Las Vegas, I was mainly attracted to its size and its modern look. The store had a large variety of clothing and departments but was still big and sleek enough to not overwhelm the customer with all of its different options. The colour scheme of the store was fairly neutral, sticking to black, white, and grey tones, yet was still dynamic as pops of colour were provided by the clothing on the racks and mannequins. Being the vanguard of fast-fashion, Topshop is constantly keeping up with different trends, meaning they are always changing what clothing they have out on their racks. Luxurious and industrial design features were also used to create a modern, on-trend look. This includes the use of shiny metal alongside wood accents and neon lighting alongside rough brick finishes. Overall, the store presented a lot of contrast in its design, which goes hand in hand with Topshop’s vibrant brand personality.

Topshop in Vancouver
Topshop in Vancouver
Even though we only have a “temporary” Topshop location in Edmonton, Topshop is still one of my go-to places when I am in need of any type of clothing. To me, Topshop represents a one-stop shopping experience as it has so many different departments. It is fashion forward, has a hip and spunky store design, and is represented by so many famous faces around the world giving it a great brand image. I don’t think I would compare it to any other store in Edmonton.

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