What one may have expected from Simons was a retail business model that would be going head to head with Saks, Nordstrom and Holt Renfrew. What we found was something very different.
What we found at the Simons grand opening at Square One in Mississauga this morning was a unique and inspiring fashion retailer who has found a way to offer the consumer avant-garde cutting edge fashion merchandise at price points that surprisingly many Canadians can afford.
How do they achieve this?
First a team of 48 world class in house designers who draw in from all corners of the fashion globe leading edge style and design which is then transformed and marketed under unique in house private label brands.
Each private label takes on its own personality and by extension frames the entire department that it is merchandised within. As an example, you won't find a department sign that calls out "Womens Career and Casual Wear". What you will find is "Contemporaine" - its not just the label on the merchandise, its the name on the department, and is defined in-store with a personality: "Elegant, Self-Assured and Refined".
European influence dominates the store across all departments and creates a unique culture for the Simons brand overall.
Customer service is another key differentiater at Simons and is at the cornerstone of their reputation. Staff are extremely well trained, very knowledgable, very friendly and in no way place undue stress on the customer in trying to close the sale.
Another great example of their customer-centric focus is their CEO Peter Simons. Unlike other CEOs at their grand opening who find it more important to socialize with the media and local dignataries, Mr. Simons took the time to address customers just prior to store opening with a very warm, heart-felt speech about the promise Simons makes towards an un-paralleled customer-driven in-store experience.
Simons is not like the others which we expected them to be. From our observations customers who were expecting another Saks, Nordstrom or Holt Renfrew, you will be pleasantly surprised in that you will find tremendous fashion forward merchandise, like the others, but at much more affordable prices, and with customer service that is second to none.
Tony Whitehouse & Bruce Winder
Co-Founders & Partners
Retail Advisors Network™
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