Thursday, March 03, 2005

Is HBC the preferred stock of Registered Liberals and/or Power Corp?

As the boys would say - does this ever blow:

At the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, Canada's athletes were the envy of the world, not just for their athletic prowess, but for their funky team uniforms. Their Roots-designed team jackets and poor-boy caps quickly became must-have fashion items for fans, foreign journalists and athletes.

Today, Roots co-founder Michael Budman is trying to figure out how and why Hudson's Bay Co., perhaps best known for its tried-and-true Hudson Bay blanket, beat out his company in its bid to outfit Canada's team -- not only for the 2006 Winter Games in Torino, Italy, but all the way through the 2012 Summer Games.

"Was I surprised [by Hudson's Bay's eight-year deal]? Yeah," said Mr. Budman, after HBC yesterday was named the official outfitter for the Canadian Olympic Committee with a winning bid of more than $100-million. "[I was surprised] because we were trying to get involved in the conversation [for a longer agreement] and we were always told, 'It can't be discussed.' "

Officials from both the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Vancouver organizing committee said HBC was picked from among 12 companies asked to submit bids when Roots's agreement with the COC expired last December.Making the final selection were representatives from the COC and the Vancouver organizing committee, although a merchandise expert was also consulted.

However, Mr. Budman remains mystified. "We were asked to bid on 2006 for the Canadian Olympic team in Torino," Mr. Budman said from his Toronto office. "We think we put in a phenomenal bid, but we weren't chosen, and we were not allowed to bid beyond 2006."

Dave Cobb, vice-president of communications for the Vancouver organizing committee, said the decision to negotiate a long-term agreement with HBC was a strategic one. The company will produce everything from parade wear to podium wear to toques, scarves, gloves and luggage, with all products sold nationally in the company's 550 department stores, including the Bay, Zellers and Home Outfitters.
Why anyone in their right mind would chose Hudson’s Bay Company athletic wear over Roots? If there is one thing I know, its athletic wear. I have been forced to buy enough of it over the last 25 years. I have one Roots sweatshirt that has lasted for over 20 years. It might be a little frayed around the edges but there is certainly a few more years of wear in it. I have never bought any kind of clothes at the Bay or Zellers that can last 2 years; let alone 20. I might pay a bit more at Roots Canada but I get value for my money, plus style. Not to mention Roots Athletic wear just feels and looks damn good. Zellers is just not going to cut it and they sell cheap athletic stocks too.

Maybe Roots Canada didn’t get the memo on how to operate a business in Gaff-anda and so do not comprehend the full implications of giving to the Liberal party of Canada.

By the way, guess who is dressing the US Olympic Team on Parade for 2006?

(Tipped off by Neale News)


darcey said...

I guess it sounded like a good idea at the time. Just wait till the itching starts...

james said...

Sounds a little like sour grapes. Thats business folks! Deals can change you know. I buy many clothes from the Bay and I have no quality issues. Its all made in bangladesh anyway! I'd rather not spend $50 on a T-shirt thank you very much! I've wanted to get some Canadian olympic wear for years, but the crazy prices have left me outside the Roots store. It all comes down to money.

Kateland, aka TZH said...

Personally, I would rather spend $50 on a sweatshirt and it lasts 10-20 years than spend $25-$30 and be buying another one every other year or less. But each to his/her own.

t r a c y said...

not to date myself or anything but i have a roots sweatshirt from the 2nd year they were in business - it's not something i would wear out anymore but it's still in one piece and is so soft ! i always wear it when i'm sick with a cold, it's very comforting. on the other hand i have a hudson's bay blanket that was my grandparents', bought many years before i was born & it's in great shape too ;-)