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Indigo reports strong third-quarter revenues and “biggest holiday to date”

(Raysonho, Creative Commons)

Indigo Books & Music’s “cultural department store” concept continues to thrive as the retailer announced its highest ever quarterly revenues.

Revenues for the company’s third quarter, which ended Dec. 30, 2017, increased $33 million (8.2 per cent) from the same time last year, to $433.3 million. Total sales (online and in-store) increased 7.9 per cent.

In a press release, Indigo CEO Heather Reisman said, “We are happy to report a strong third quarter – our biggest holiday to date. Our performance across all channels and categories is a clear reflection of the success of our ‘Every gift tells a story’ seasonal message, the strength of our brand and the passion of our customers for our reimagined cultural department store concept. Our investments in digital, new store development and supply chain infrastructure were critical to our success, as was, of course, the outstanding engagement of our team.”

In a conference call to investors, CFO Hugues Simard said that given the concept’s success to date, Indigo will accelerate the roll-out to more locations, including a planned renovation for its Toronto Bay and Bloor location, and a new flagship store in downtown Vancouver. In total, 20 stores are planned for the 2019 fiscal year, which begins in April. A new distribution facility in Calgary to support the western provinces will also have a soft launch this spring, in preparation for a fall opening.

In response to an investor question, Simard spoke of Indigo’s promotional agreement with U.S. mattress and bedding company Casper, which has installed “nap pods” inside seven Indigo locations, promoting sales of its pillow line. Simard said the partnership’s “potential is strong,” and aligns with Indigo’s focus on wellness and health.

Simard said Indigo is also committed to testing the U.S. market, with its first location scheduled to open in New Jersey this summer, and is currently looking at opportunities. “It’s not a race,” he said. “We’ll do this right.