The first Real Canadian Wholesale Club (RCWC) was opened in 1991, in the area of Saskatoon. This first store had an area of 48,000 feet square and offered products in bulk at discounted prices. This store also did not require consumers to pay any membership fee just to shop at the warehouse club.
In 1994, RCWC opened six more wholesale clubs in the area of Ontario. This was followed by the completion of two more stores in the areas of Edmonton, Alberta. Over the years since the first store, the chain continued to work on improving the stores, its products and services. Among the improvements that were made is the expansion of the store areas, from being 40,000 square feet to 60,000 square feet. The warehouse clubs now had the capacity to cater to the needs of small retail grocers, as well as different kinds of small businesses.
Along with the stores’ expansions, was the expansion of its product lines. The wholesale club began to offer fresh produce, as well as a wide range of tobacco products, general merchandise items and institutional packs that a number of small businesses in the area needed. By 1996, RCWC’s targets had included businesses like restaurants. The chain particularly focused on small businesses and restaurants that did not want to pay for delivery of goods worth $500 to a $1000.
By 2008, the chain’s name was changed to “Wholesale Club” in the English parts of Canada and Club Entrepot for stores located in Quebec. Currently, there are about 63 stores all throughout the country. With the change name, improvements were also added in every warehouse clubs’ main features. These features include a “no membership fee” policy, the availability of different product sizes (individual packaging, club packaging, case and pallet), and an extension of the stores’ open hours (to accommodate the chain’s business customers). The quality of food products remains high, and the stores still sell products at discounted prices (meaning a customer pays less for buying more than 1 item of a product).
Ownership Type: A subsidiary of Loblaw Companies, Limited
Employees: Information not available
Demography: Retail products consumers