Target Canada may deepen its discounts on Thursday, say company employees.
Such a move could help placate disappointed shoppers who lined up early last Thursday for the start of liquidation sales. Many felt let down by markdowns of 10 to 30 per cent.
Target Canada's further price cuts will be on select items, an Ontario store employee told CBC News.
"It will be [cheaper] in some departments but not all," said the worker, who wants her name withheld because she fears repercussions from the company.
She does not know how much lower the discounts will go, but estimates some prices will drop by another 10 per cent. She explained that items now discounted by 20 per cent could drop to 30 per cent. But she believes price cuts still won't go below 30 per cent.
The employee also said the discounts could vary between stores.
Target doesn't know
U.S.-based Target announced last month that it was closing its 133 stores in Canada and laying off about 17,600 employees. A group of liquidation companies is overseeing the final sale.
Target says it has no knowledge of plans to lower prices Thursday.
But company spokeswoman Molly Snyder said that doesn't necessarily mean deeper discounts won't happen. "The liquidators do not plan to proactively announce any pricing changes in advance of them doing so," she told CBC News in an email.
A Target Canada store manager told CBC News that liquidators have asked his store to schedule a team of workers for an early Thursday morning shift to post new sales signs.
He warned, however, it has not been confirmed if the team will actually be needed.
Last week, some Target Canada employees worked late on Wednesday night or arrived before stores opened the next day to hang liquidation sales signs advertising discounts of 10 to 30 per cent.
Apparently stores have packages of deeper-discount signage of up to 80 per cent waiting in the wings.
What will be left?
The manager, who also wants to remain nameless, estimates sales at his store have been brisk since the liquidation sale started.
But he also says shelves are being replenished with fresh truckloads of goods. New arrivals, he says, include patio furniture and summer apparel that he believes Target Canada bought before it announced in recent weeks that it was going out of business.
However, not all stores continue to be well stocked. According to internal company emails, 36 Target Canada stores have stopped receiving new shipments.
The Ontario employee told CBC News she’s looking forward to deeper discounts, but not because she plans to shop the store during her break.
“I hope the sales get better and [customers] come in and buy the store out. That way I can get laid off sooner and maybe, just maybe get a few weeks [paid leave].”
The company is paying most employees for at least 16 final weeks, but some may have to work for the entire period.
Target Canada had been hemorrhaging money and is undergoing a court-supervised wind-down. According to court documents, the deadline to vacate each store is May 15.