Hudson’s Bay Company, a Canadian retail group, plans to open 20 stores in The Netherlands over the next two years. The first stores will launch in summer 2017, including a confirmed location in Amsterdam Rokin. The move is expected to create 2,500 store jobs and 2,500 construction jobs in key Dutch cities. Haarlem’s empty V&D may have a new occupant!
Founded in 1670 as a fur trading business, Hudson’s Bay Company is the oldest company in North America. The Netherlands’ new stores will operate under the Hudson’s Bay Company and Saks Off 5th banners. “The Bay,” as Canadians refer to it, is a department store that is more upscale than the V&D, but less luxury than the Bijenkorf. The retail chain Saks Off 5th is an American designer fashion discount outlet that was acquired by Hudson’s Bay in 2013.
Richard Baker, governor and chairman of the Hudson’s Bay Company, said market research showed the Dutch feel a strong affinity for Canada. This friendly feeling dates back to the liberation of the Netherlands by Canadian troops in the Second World War.
Baker said, “What we found out was that the people of the Netherlands wanted a young, exciting and interesting department store that was theirs, but they also loved Hudson’s Bay and they also loved the idea of a Canadian department store. So what we’ve done is, we are opening up a chain of premium department stores in the Netherlands that is similar to the Hudson’s Bay stores, but with a Dutch flavour to them.”
Haarlem’s Empty V&D Could Be Future Hudson’s Bay Store
Hudson’s Bay Company has worked out agreements with landlords of now-vacant V&D buildings to renovate some of the vacated properties for Hudson’s Bay stores. The new stores are expected to open in the most desirable locations. Potential future locations include cities such as Haarlem, Leiden, Amstelveen, The Hague, Rotterdam, Amersfort, Utrecht, Almere, Zwolle, Enschede and Eindhoven.
What do you think of the Canadian retail store Hudson’s Bay coming to The Netherlands?