More from MMR News


Online shopping convenient but isolating

Professor Yu Ma, Academic Director of the Master of Management in Retailing (MMR) program, weighs in on the ongoing impact of the pandemic on Canadian retail trends, particularly the steep rise in e-commerce. From his perspective, the convenience of online shopping comes at the expense of the social aspect that encourages customers to spend their money in-store.

Published: 18 Mar 2021

Canadian retail recovering from pandemic ahead of schedule

Emerging ‘shop local’ trends have helped set the Canadian retail industry on a fast track to recovery despite pandemic-induced closures.

According to Charles de Brabant, Executive Director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management, the sense of community pride that has motivated shoppers to shop local makes all the difference for Canadian retailers that are struggling to weather the pandemic.

Published: 22 Feb 2021

McGill’s retail innovation lab tests “frictionless store” concept

Under the leadership of co-director Professor Maxime Cohen, McGill’s new retail innovation lab is experimenting with contactless shopping, a rising trend in retail innovation.

By downloading an app, shoppers can use QR codes to unlock store doors and pick up any items they want without having to check out in the store. Cohen joins Global News Morning Montreal to share more.

Published: 12 Feb 2021

Shopping centres face choice between reinvention and extinction

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reshape consumer preferences in the retail industry, large shopping centres will either pivot or fade into memory.

Published: 3 Feb 2021

Package-free stores aim to eliminate waste

A new wave of sustainability-focused retailers are embracing a package-free retail trend to minimize the environmental impact of shopping for groceries and everyday goods.

Professor Saibal Ray, the academic director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management, applauds the innovative attempts to avoid packaging while pointing out the difficulty of implementation.

Published: 3 Feb 2021

Hudson Bay Co. entangled in rent payment disputes as pandemic hurts bottom line

In recent months, property firms behind prominent shopping malls across North America have taken Hudson’s Bay Co. (HBC) to court to claim unpaid rent totaling millions of dollars. While industry analysts question the financial security of the Canadian icon, recently taken private following a months-long process, key HBC executives cite the landlords’ unwillingness to absorb the share the costs of the pandemic as the primary reason for the dispute.

Published: 21 Jan 2021

Hope for Quebec retail

Charles de Brabant, Executive Director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management, is optimistic about the future of retail following a horrendous year for most Canadian retailers. Giants like Amazon and Walmart, who account for 20% of the retail market, still generated profits in 2020, but the remaining 80% fared so poorly that they brought overall industry profits down by 93%.

Published: 12 Jan 2021

Boxing Day comes early for Quebec retailers

In anticipation of a two-week shutdown of non-essential businesses starting December 25, Quebec retailers are moving Boxing Day sales up a week.

Published: 18 Dec 2020

For Canadian retailers, digitization is key to surviving the pandemic

Only 30 percent of Canada’s small business are hitting normal sales numbers as the second wave of the pandemic crashes into their bottom line. According to Professor Yu Ma, Academic Director of the Master of Management in Retailing, nothing short of digital transformation will equip these businesses to survive.

Published: 11 Dec 2020

Retailers must adapt to survive holidays as COVID-19 lockdown remains in place

Historically, December yields the largest profits for retailers, who are accustomed to ramping up their year-end operations to keep pace with the hustle and bustle of holiday shopping. This December, however, is a different story.

As the recent surge of the COVID-19 pandemic forces businesses across Canada to close their doors once again, retailers must adapt to survive.

Published: 10 Dec 2020

Canadian retailers in turmoil as pandemic lockdown continues

The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic has forced thousands of retailers across Canada to shut their doors during the holiday season. Some will never open them again. Anwar White, Program Director, Master of Management in Retailing, puts the struggle that retailers are facing into context and points to a silver lining.

Published: 10 Dec 2020

Quebecers adjust to an unusual holiday season

Anwar White, Program Director of the Master of Management in Retailing, weighs in on current shopping trends in Quebec as the COVID-19 pandemic casts a shadow over the holiday season. From a growing trend toward e-commerce to in-store pickup, shoppers seek a balance between health concerns and convenience as they adapt their holiday plans to a new reality.

Published: 7 Dec 2020

Retail for a post-COVID world

Professor Saibal Ray weighs in on the strategies that will propel retailers to success in a post-pandemic landscape where the optimal customer experience is a frictionless experience. As the academic director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management, Prof.

Published: 7 Dec 2020

Malls face uncertain future in COVID-19 era

Are malls on their way out? Charles de Brabant, the Executive Director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management, joins the debate about the future of the traditional shopping centre in a rapidly evolving retail landscape.

Learn more

Published: 1 Dec 2020

Pandemic sparks higher demand for locally made products in Quebec

As the pandemic continues to strain local businesses, a greater percentage of Quebecers has stepped in to keep them afloat. Charles de Brabant, Executive Director of the McGill University Bensadoun School of Retail Management, weighs in on what to expect from shoppers this holiday season.

Published: 27 Nov 2020


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