Montreal

Quebec chocolatier to buy Laura Secord: reports

Laura Secord and its chain of 129 stores across Canada have been bought by a Quebec City chocolatier, the new owner is to announce Friday.

Laura Secord and its chain of 129 stores across Canada have been bought by a Quebec City chocolatier, the new owner is to announce Friday.

Local media say Jean Leclerc, who owns Nutri-Art Chocolates in Quebec City, will be returning the 97-year-old retail institution to Canadian hands.

Nutri-Art, which has about 100 employees, is a former division of cookie company Leclerc.

Laura Secord has changed hands several times over the years and is currently owned by a U.S. private equity firm, although the Quebec Solidarity Fund owns a small share as well.

The 51-year-old Leclerc was a Liberal member of the Quebec legislature between 1985 and 1994.

Laura Secord originated when Frank O'Connor began selling hand-made chocolates from his Toronto store in 1913. He named the business after the British loyalist from the Niagara region who walked 32 km to warn British officers about a surprise attack the Americans were planning in the War of 1812.

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