Giant Tiger's VP Jason Gardiner Shares Strategies and Progress
OTTAWA, CANADA - These days, in the competitive retail landscape of North America, culture and vision are everything. With a foundation aimed at achieving both excellence and providing value to its guests, Giant Tiger is looking to its future growth with firm footing, unwavering foresight, and a team primed to take on 2018.
As we wrap up the year, and reflect on the time that has passed, Vice President Jason Gardiner joins me to talk about the proud Canadian retailer and what sets them apart from the pack.
“Giant Tiger focuses on the total needs of our customers. Fresh is an integral part of the shopping experience for Canadian families, and we work closely with our owners and manager to ensure that the assortment offered meets the needs of their customers,” Jason shares with me. “We focus on quality and value for our customers, and while this concept is simple, it is incredibly effective and continues to make Giant Tiger a destination for grocery.”
As a leading Canadian-owned discount retailer, Giant Tiger is committed to providing groceries, on-trend family fashion, and everyday needs at an everyday low price.
“We focus on an efficient shopping experience,” Jason says, adding that the company’s core customer is the busy time-starved mom. “Our goal is to provide an easy shopping experience for our customer. We aim to be a retailer where she can shop efficiently and on budget. This focus on an efficient shop also means ensuring that we have the right mix of products to meet the diverse demands of the Canadian family.”
Giant Tiger knows that in order to continue to meet the needs of Canadian families it must always be on the lookout for new vendors while maintaining the strong vendor relationships that it is known for.
“Our buyers are always on the lookout for new products and new vendors to add to our network. By working with an engaged and focused vendor pool we are able to ensure we are proactively anticipating our customers’ needs and adjusting our strategies accordingly,” offers Gardiner.
Giant Tiger was founded in 1961 by Gordon Reid, in Ottawa’s historic Byward Market. With an eye for evolution and customer service, the company has grown to over 240 stores in eight provinces. As a privately held, franchise based, company, Giant Tiger is proactive and forward-thinking, strategically looking to its long term growth and goals as we wrap up 2017. Jason drills down on the company’s business model for me, noting that simple but incredibly effective methodology.
Giant Tiger provides that easy one-stop-shop for customers by averaging 16,000 to 25,000-sq-ft. store size, making items accessible, the trip as quick as you’d like it to be, and the experience painless.
“We truly listen to our customers and changed the look and layout of stores based on customer insight,” Jason tells me. “We continue to look to customer feedback for ways to improve the shopping experience and are constantly upgrading quality without increasing price.”
The first franchise was established in Maniwaki, Quebec, in 1968 and, as Jason adds, it is not uncommon that today’s owners are longstanding members of the community, with 20 to 30 years of service in a given market.
“Our franchise owners are operators, meaning that they are in the stores daily. They live in the community where their store is located, so that they share the goals of the community and are advocates for success, while meeting those unique needs of their guests,” he says. “Equally our franchisees—their experience and expertise—are valued by Giant Tiger, and we view the relationship as a partnership. We listen to and respect their feedback and opinions. Respect is the cornerstone of who we are as a retailer—respect and opportunity. Teams constantly reward hard work and thoughtful planning. This culture of respect is one that is evident in every aspect of the business.”
2018 is quickly approaching, promising more big things from this Canadian retailer. Stay tuned as we bring you more from the team behind Giant Tiger and its growing focus on fresh.