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Mar 18, 2020
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More Canadian retailers, brands announce store closures on COVID-19 outbreak

Mar 18, 2020

Canada is taking all necessary precautions amid the COVID-19 outbreak with Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announcing social distancing measures to protect Canadians, as early as last Thursday. 

Holt Renfrew Ogilvy exterior. - Holt, Renfrew & Co., Limited

While most malls across the country remain open - some at reduced store hours - in the midst of the pandemic, many retailers are stepping up and taking preventative measures including temporarily closing their stores. 

Following the lead of retailers like Canada Goose, Aritzia and Lululemon, several brands and retailers said Tuesday that they would equally close their stores across the country, to do their part to contain the pandemic. 

Hudson’s Bay 

Canada’s iconic retailer Hudson’s Bay announced late Tuesday that it would close all its stores. Effective immediately, the retailer said that stores will remain closed for two weeks at which point operations will be reassessed. 

The company said that during the closure “store associates will be paid for all scheduled shifts that were planned for the two weeks.” 

Furthermore, like many other retailers, the Hudson’s Bay will be extending its return policy by 30 days. 

Holt Renfrew 

Holt Renfrew said that it would close all of its stores at the end of the business day on Tuesday, until further notice. Customers will be able to continue to shop online at holtrenfrew.com. 

The Canadian luxury retailer operates eight stores across the country including four locations in Ontario, where the reported cases of COVID-19 are the highest in the country. 

For its employees, the company said: “As it relates to compensation, we will continue to support our store employees as they are our top priority.” 


Reitmans Limited is closing its family of store brands including Reitmans, Penningtons, Addition Elle, RW&CO, and Thyme Maternity stores nationwide. The closures will be in effect until Saturday, March 28. 

Reitmans also assured that it would continue to pay its store employees for all scheduled work hours. Furthermore, it is equally extending its return policy offering a 30-day return policy from store re-opening to return in-store purchases made since February 1. 

Its retail operations consists of 260 Reitmans, 112 Penningtons, 79 Addition Elle, 81 RW & CO. and 55 Thyme Maternity stores.


Canadian womenswear chain Dynamite has decided to shut all of its stores across North America, until further notice.

The retailer who operates over a 100 store locations said that “an Employee Relief Program has been set in place to help our employees through this unimaginable time.” 


Montreal-based footwear retailer Aldo announced Tuesday afternoon that all of its stores in Canada would close along with units in the United States, the UK, France, and Ireland through March 31. 

It is equally committed to paying its store teams for their scheduled shifts and will adjust its return policy to 90 days for all purchases made as of February 1, 2020.


Canadian outerwear giant Mackage has announced the closure of its retail stores. Until further notice, the brands 18 stores spread out across North America, London and China will be closed.  

The celebrity-loved brand has been growing its retail footprint, most recently opening a store in Edmonton, Alberta in September and inaugurated a six-month pop-up on London’s Sloane Street.

Reitmans Limited is closing its family of store brands nationwide. - Facebook: Reitmans

Harry Rosen

Toronto-based luxury menswear retailer Harry Rosen announced that it would shutter its Canadian stores at the end of the day Tuesday including two Zegna-branded stores, as well as Harry Rosen outlet stores. All stores will remain closed until March 31. 

In a note to customers, the company said that affected associates will continue to be compensated during the closure. 

Kit and Ace

Canadian apparel brand Kit and Ace announced the closure of all of its retail stores until March 27. The brand operates nine locations including in Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary. 

It has also implemented a remote working protocol for office employees returning from travel and/or showing symptoms of sickness, and cancelled all business travel. 


Montreal-based luxury retailer Ssense is also temporarily closing its flagship store in the city. 

For its office employees, which consists of over 800 individuals, the company is enforcing a Work From Home Policy for all employees who are able to do so and have streamlined critical on-site staff.

It said that it canceled all business-related travel and have implemented safety measures for individuals returning from travels.

Judith and Charles

After announcing that it would reduce store hours on Monday, Canadian womenswear brand Judith and Charles said on Tuesday that it would temporalily close all its retail locations as of Wednesday. 

Judith and Charles has been based in Montreal, Quebec since 1990. The company currently has 11 stores across Canada.

It is expected that hundreds of more stores will close on Wednesday, as the situation continues to accelerate. 

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