Are traders happy or not happy to open?

While some traders were delighted yesterday with the reopening of non-essential businesses, others see little point in it and would have waited a little longer.

“If we had waited another two or three weeks, I would have been happier,” says Jack Hallack, owner of the Jaco Uomo men’s clothing store on rue Saint-Hubert in Montreal.

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The entrepreneur explains that men won’t be rushing to shop for a shirt.

“Everyone is at home, the restaurants are closed, there are no weddings, no galas, maybe no proms,” he says.

The cancellation of all these events hurt the industry. In short, no reason to buy new clothes.

“There’s no point in opening,” Mr. Hallack drops.

A few doors down, at the NEON clothing store, we think about the same thing.

“I would have waited until at least March 1. February is the worst month of the year in retail, ”says owner Irving Tajfel, who also owns three other NEON stores in Montreal.

Mr. Tajfel did not wish to comment on the advance sales.

“We will see at the end of the week if it was worth it, financially, to open”, explains the one who has “considerably fewer employees” than before the pandemic.

As for the Belle & Rebelle boutique, where Quebec artisans and designers from the fashion sector are in the spotlight, the owner has even decided to reopen tomorrow.

“We didn’t have time to receive our deliveries. We wanted to reopen with a beautiful store, not an abandoned store, ”explains Anne Lespérance.

As it’s a quiet month, she would have taken “a little two more weeks”, too. But the entrepreneur is delighted to have been able to rehire her team of five and to be able to get back to work.

“The break was good, we are rested and we reopen with the spring novelties, it’s exciting”, she exclaims.

Catherine Lecompte, Boutique arloca

Photo Julien McEvoy

Catherine Lecompte, Boutique arloca

Unlike these three clothing store owners, Catherine Lecompte, from Boutique arloca, where you can find among other things jewelry and decorative items made by Quebec and Canadian artisans, is delighted.

“I didn’t open a store to sell online,” says the one who went into business in April 2019.

Yesterday, when the Journal, she was in the process of reviving her store with her parents, who came to help her on a voluntary basis.

“I’m happy to open. Between that or unemployment, the choice is simple, ”says Catherine Lecompte.


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