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Avril planning new stores in Sherbrooke, Laval

avrilAvril Supermarché Santé is growing again.   The Quebec-based natural health food retailer has attracted national attention in recent years for the creation of its beautiful stores, and now the company has announced the opening of two more.

Avril Supermarché Santé is growing again.   The Quebec-based natural health food retailer has attracted national attention in recent years for the creation of its beautiful stores, and now the company has announced the opening of two more.

Sherbrooke in 2017 and Laval in 2018.  This will bring the group’s total to eight stores, and they will join current locations in Brossard, Longueuil, Granby, Magog, Lévis and Québec City.

Alex St-Onge is Avril’s director of marketing. He says the new Sherbrooke location is slated to open in the fall.  “Sherbrooke is a very interesting city and we've been looking to open there for quite a while. It is well-known, especially for its dynamic student life (the strongest concentration in the province with 40,000 students), a crowd that is more and more interested in a healthier lifestyle and also for its big food scene, with a lot of good restaurants. There seems to be a new one opening there every week.”

Alex explains that the Magog store is only 30 kms from Sherbrooke, but the two region’s demographics are completely different. “On one side, you have the students, workers, professionals and business owners in Sherbrooke, and on the other side, you have a more seasonal crowd in Magog with chalet owners, tourists, sport amateurs and retirees who now live in the beautiful Eastern Townships. Of course, that is to give you just a general idea, but the two customer bases are very diverse.”

The Sherbrooke store will measure about 20,000 sq. ft. like other Avril locations. “It will be pretty much a replica of the Quebec store, our latest,” explained Alex.  “One of the most interesting features is the bistro which will have big windows and more space. The building is a new construction and will host some very modern and convenient features, including medical and health clinics, a gym and more. We are very excited about it.”

Alex says that Avril has been interested in a Laval location for some time.  “There has been a very high demand for us to open a store there for the past three years, and it’s been coming from places like social media and in person at events like the Expo Manger Santé et Vivre Vert in Montreal. Luckily, this year, we had a great opportunity for a location at Centre Laval (a major shopping centre with 130 stores), close to other complementary concepts such as Sportium, a sports equipment retail store. Laval is a big population centre with a lot of commercial activity, so we felt we had to be there to serve this huge population, that is eager to eat well and live a healthier life.”

Alex says at the moment, the two new stores are the only ones on the Avril horizon.  But he says there are many other projects on the go, including the integration of the SAP solution, a software that will help Avril scale its business and improve logistics.  •


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