Longo’s Maple Leaf Square store is making shoppers’ holidays a little sweeter this season with a Godiva shop-in-shop.
The downtown Toronto store is the second Longo’s to partner with premium chocolatier Godiva. The first outlet is at the south east Oakville, Ont. store.
Godiva has 19 stores in Canada, and its products can be found in food, drug and mass retailers but it’s limited, said Bruce Rafuse, general manager for Godiva in Canada.
Rafuse said Godiva opened similar shop-in-shop concepts with U.S. grocer Wegmans. The Godiva shop-in-shop carries the same product and retail pricing and promotions in the grocery environment as found in its retail outlets.
There are three components to the shop-in-shop concept at Longo’s, said Rafuse with all Longo’s staff trained by Godiva.
First is the theatre of “dipping”. Dipping involves dipping truffles, strawberries or caramel bars into a vat of decadent Godiva Belgian chocolate.
Next, there’s the chocolate case next to Longo’s bakery that features mainly Godiva’s Belgian truffles. Finally, there’s the iconic premium golden ballotin gift boxes. It’s the first time we’re selling these gift boxes in grocery, said Rafuse.
Going forward, Godiva is committed to expanding its growth opportunities in grocery. Rafuse said there are five more shop-in-shops planned next year–one with Longo’s–and the others in Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver. Rafuse wouldn’t name the other retailers he’s speaking to at present.
For grocery, Godiva developed a spelling dipping unit with wheels so Longo’s could do sampling and move the unit from the store floor to bakery.
Longo’s store manager at the Maple Leaf Square store said the partnership has been successful since the Godiva shop opened in a soft launch mid-October. Now leading up to the holiday season, Steve Gigis said he anticipates customers coming to his store to pick up gifts and treats. “We’re providing a value-added service with Godiva chocolates,” he said. The bestselling item is the Truffle Flight boxes that come in six varieties.