REAL ESTATE

Canadian Tire rolls out new auto store

BY Staff Writer

Montreal — A Thursday report in the Montreal Gazette said that Canadian Tire Corp. unveiled a new prototype on Wednesday in Bowmanville, Ontario, east of Toronto.

The new store is 40% larger than a typical in-store automotive department and features a service area with a drive-in reception, a new auto detailing bay and a sound booth for customers to test in-car audio entertainment systems, GPS and car safety electronics.

The test store is one of three opening in Ontario this year.

Canadian Tire, which recently closed its purchase acquired sporting goods chain Forzani Group Ltd., is prepping for Target’s arrival into Canada in 2013, which stands to give competition in categories such as small appliances, home decor and accessories, according to the report.

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Lee Scott talks beer and has Las Vegas buzzing

BY CSA STAFF

Former Walmart president and CEO Lee Scott was a keynote speaker earlier this week at the National Beer Wholesalers Association’s 74th annual convention and trade show at Ceasar’s Palace in Las Vegas.

Promotional materials billed his appearance as an exciting opportunity to hear about the leadership, innovation and business strategies that led Walmart to be such a successful retailer and noted that Scott would also participate in a candid question and answer forum where distributors would have the opportunity to ask some tough questions.

Walmart News Now didn’t attend the event, but an article in Ad Age recounted some comments Scott made about craft beers, Walmart’s assortment and 26 year old buyers.

To read the Ad Age article click here.

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Competitive cooking event drives Sam’s Club traffic

BY CSA STAFF

Sam’s Club home office last week hosted 50 competitive barbecue teams who traveled to Northwest Arkansas for the final round of competition in the inaugural Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour. The event kicked off back in April when teams battled for a spot in the championship, which was sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbeque Society.

The winner of the event, TippyCanoe BBQ Crew of St. Ansgar, Iowa, received a cash prize of $35,000, while a total of $400,000 in prize money was awarded to teams throughout the course of the tour.

Some portion of those funds surely ended up back in Sam’s Club cash registers as one of the goals of the program was to highlight Sam’s Club as a destination for meats and a wide range of other products used by food service operators focused on the barbeque sector.

“As the provider of quality meats for professional and amateur pit masters alike, Sam’s Club was thrilled to host the inaugural Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour Championship,” said Bob Fields, senior merchandise director for Sam’s Club. “We are proud to have hosted some of the top professional barbecue teams from across the country, and to serve thousands in our communities by offering samples and sharing tips on how to be better grillers in their own backyards."

The event no doubt spread considerable good will among participants and favorable word of mouth on the competitive cooking circuit as the prize money was quite generous. For example, the reserve champion title and $15,000 prize went to Grog N Hogs of Richmond, Va. Third place overall and a $6,000 prize went to Big T’s Q Cru of Ames, Iowa. First place finishers in each category received a $5,000 prize. Uncle Kenny’s BBQ of Winter Garden, Fla. finished first in ribs. First place brisket went to Fowl Butt BBQ of Decatur, Ind. First place chicken went to The Smoking Hills of Overland Park, Kan., and first place pork went to TRUEBUD of Tonganoxie, Kan.

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