TORONTO, Canada — Canada Goose is heading to China, opening two stores and a regional headquarters as it hopes to win over more luxury shoppers who desire the warmth and fashion cred of a $900 parka with the brand’s patch on its sleeve.
Chief executive Dani Reiss said he’s making “significant investments” in China and outlined the coatmaker’s plan to open a Beijing flagship and a shop in Hong Kong this fall, along with an e-commerce business on Alibaba’s online Tmall. The Toronto-based company will partner with retail management firm ImagineX Group to help with operations, including staffing and daily administration.
“The opportunity for Canada Goose in China is massive,” Reiss said in a statement. “We have already seen exceptional demand from Chinese consumers — locally and internationally — for years.”
Canada Goose Holdings Inc., whose new China office will be in Shanghai, has been looking for new avenues of growth since going public in 2017. The high-end outerwear company wants to be known for more than just cold-weather gear, releasing such products as spring windbreakers and reflective raincoats. It already sells in China through wholesale distribution partners.
Many luxury brands from North America and Europe are thriving in Asia due to Chinese consumers’ newfound willingness to spend instead of save. Italian coatmaker Moncler, one of Canada Goose’s biggest rivals, already has a significant presence in the region, with about 40 percent of its business coming from its Asia division.
Chinese consumers are becoming more amenable to legacy cold-weather brands as interest rises in winter sports and culture. Though there were only about 12.5 million skiers in China in 2015, the government has said it hopes to attract an additional 300 million non-skiers to mountain resorts and ski slopes. The 2022 Winter Olympics will be held in Beijing.
By Kim Bhasin; editors: Anne Riley Moffat and Mark Schoifet.