TORONTO – E-commerce mattress retailer Casper will open at least two stores here sometime during the first half of 2018, the opening salvo in its plan to build a brick and mortar network in Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta over the next 12 months. It also plans to set up a Canadian headquarters and manufacture at least some of its product line in this country.
The New York City-based Casper began selling mattresses online in Canada in late 2014, not long after it began operations south of the border, where it already has 18 stand-alone stores. It also struck a deal last year that will see its product sold at some 1,200 Target department stores across the United States.
In a statement, the privately-held company said its expansion is being driven by what it described as “overwhelming demand” and maintains it has true nationwide coverage with customer support and shipping across all provinces and territories.
"We've seen tremendous success in Canada with three years of triple digit growth,” Casper co-founder and chief executive officer Philip Krim said in a statement. “Investing further in the market and expanding our local presence will enable us to bring better sleep to even more Canadians across the country.”
The first of Casper’s Canadian retail shops – which it said are designed to re-imagine the sleep-shopping experience – will open here next month at the Sherway Gardens shopping centre. Shoppers will be able to try Casper’s full product suite in one of four miniature homes, purchase in-store to carry out, or deliver to their doorsteps. The second location is will open later this year somewhere in downtown Toronto.
“Over the past three years, Casper has built a loyal customer base in Canada and we’ve seen the demand to experience our products in-person grow exponentially,” said Nicole Tapscott, senior director and general manager of Casper Canada. “Putting down permanent roots with our fleet of retail stores and a headquarters in Toronto will allow us to engage with customers on a local level, as well as tap into Canada's impressive talent base.”
In all, Casper expects to create 75 jobs in its Canadian operation this year.
It said it is also in discussions with Canadian manufacturers above producing it product assortment but hadn’t selected a partner at press time.
Casper has been building up to this launch for the past year or two. In March of last year, it unveiled its first retail presence in Canada in a now-ended partnership with the West Elm banner of Williams-Sonoma, where its assortment was offered on a cash-and-carry basis.
In February, it partnered with Indigo Books & Music to house seven shop-in-store ‘nap pods’ across the country. Also, Casper pillows are also offered at some 30 Indigo locations as well as on its web site at indigo.ca.
Casper has said its investors include celebrities such as actors Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Adam Levine and Ashton Kutcher and that since it was launched in 2014 has garnered total global revenue of about US$600 million. Its Canadian web site can be found at casper.ca.