May 22, 2020 Calgary, Alberta – Calgary Co-operative Association Limited (“Calgary Co-op”) will be postponing its 63rd Annual Meeting until further notice. In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the strict restrictions on gatherings, the Board of Directors (the “Board”) has determined that a conventional in-person AGM cannot be held until such time as it is permitted and safe to do so.
At this time, the Board has also determined that it is in the members’ best interests to wait to hold the AGM conventionally, in an in-person format, as opposed to a virtual AGM, in recognition that some members may not have the requisite access to technology that is required to attend and participate in a virtual AGM.
Additionally, given the number of members entitled to attend an AGM, which totals more than 440,000 members, a virtual AGM would be logistically difficult to host. To ensure all members have an equal opportunity to attend the AGM, the Board has determined that the best option going forward is to hold an in-person AGM when it is permitted and safe to do so. The deadline to receive member proposals will therefore be extended pursuant to 4.10 of Calgary Co-op’s Bylaws.
Despite this postponement, Calgary Co-op is pleased to share its 2019 financial results, annual report and results of its 2020 Director Elections at this time.
Board of Directors
Three directors have been elected to the board to serve a three-year term on the Calgary Co-op Board of Directors.
The 2020-2021 Calgary Co-op Board of Directors consists of nine directors and includes:
“The skill level of this year’s candidates is truly outstanding and speaks to the interest of representing one of the largest retail co-operatives in North America. I want to thank each of the candidates for their patience as we continue to navigate the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation,” advised Patricia McLeod, Board Chair. Ms. McLeod sincerely thanks all eight member-owner candidates who put their name forward to run in the 2020 Director Election.
Total sales for the year ending on November 2, 2019 amounted to $1.237 billion, compared to $1.302 billion in 2018. This $65 million or 5% year-over-year decrease is attributable to deflation in petroleum prices, the 53-weeks of operation in 2018, and the closure of the Taradale Food store.
Net earnings for 2019 amounted to $52.7M, compared to $55.3M in 2018. The gains made on the sale of the Taradale property, following the closure of the food store, largely offset the $9.4M decrease in FCL patronage refund. Earnings from operations were largely consistent year-over-year.
The Board of Directors approved the payment of patronage returns in the amount of $37 million in 2019, an increase from the $32 million returned to members in 2018. The portion of the patronage returns paid in cash was $28 million (compared to $24 million in 2018) with $9 million paid in shares in 2019 (compared to $8 million in 2018).
The 2019 member refund was based on the following:
• 2 per cent refund based on purchases at food centres, pharmacies, convenience stores, home health care centres, wine, spirits and beer and cannabis locations (with the same allocation rate as in 2018); and
• 8 cents per litre refund based on petroleum fuel purchases (a 2 cents per litre increase over the 6 cents per litre allocated in 2018).
Complete financial results are included in the 2019 Annual Report, which is available here.
Calgary Co-op will be posting a highlights video to its website providing an overview of Calgary Co-op’s 2019 governance and finances. The purpose of the video is to provide members with transparency and an overview of the 2019 highlights for Calgary Co-op, given that an in-person AGM cannot be held at this time. The video will be posted to the Calgary Co-op website by June 10, 2020.
Calgary Co-op is positioning its food business to further enhance its focus on Calgary with more local products and communications tailored specifically to members.
“The ongoing COVID-19 situation has meant a greater focus on health and safety for all,” says Ken Keelor, CEO of Calgary Co-op. “We continue to take many steps to ensure our stores are a safe place for members to shop, while simultaneously transforming our business with the introduction of new private label brands, including Cal & Gary’s and Founders & Farmers. We look forward to continuing to serve our members in meaningful ways and listening to their feedback as we continue to enhance our range of local products, brands and offerings in-store.”
Calgary Co-op recently made three major commitments to elevate the customer experience in its food stores:
• A tailored assortment of products - focused more on local, healthy and convenient items;
• A fresh Calgary Co-op flyer, exclusively for members - loaded with savings and inspiration; and
• A new range of private brands, exclusively available at food stores - providing quality, value and relevant products.
Calgary Co-op’s food stores operate in a very competitive environment under continuing challenging economic conditions in Calgary. Positioning the food stores as a shopping destination for local, healthy and convenient shopping experiences is important for Calgary Co-op to reflect the evolving needs of its member-owners.
About Calgary Co-op
Owned by members, Calgary Co-op is one of the largest retail co-operatives in North America. Our locations in Calgary, Airdrie, Cochrane, High River, Okotoks and Strathmore include: food centres, pharmacies, gas stations, car washes, commercial cardlocks, home health care centres, wine, spirits and beer locations, and cannabis.
With over 440,000 members, 3,850 employees, assets of $627 million and annual sales of $1.2 billion, Calgary Co-op was recognized as one of Alberta's Top 75 Employers of 2019, and is committed to delivering an exceptional customer experience through inspired team members. For more information please visit www.calgarycoop.com.
For further information, please contact:
Sage Pullen McIntosh
Calgary Co-operative Association Limited
Office: 403.219.6025 ext. 6105