The goal of this relationship is to support the critical eco-system of independent retailers and suppliers within the fashion category of footwear, apparel, and accessories. The two national associations will focus on retail-specific member programs that support these retailers and wholesalers.
Both organizations will collaborate on joint communications, education programs and benefits relevant to the retail industry.
AFA Canada (formerly Ontario Shoe Travellers Association) launched in February 2020 to address the need for retailers and suppliers to strategically work together to build a stronger voice for independent fashion retailers. Once exclusive to suppliers, AFA Canada now welcomes retailers from across the country to join and contribute their voice toward a stronger future.
“In an effort to advance the community supporting retailers and suppliers within the footwear, apparel and accessory industries, the alliance with Retail Council of Canada will unify our community platform to help the buying and selling process, facilitate business, share information and support through education. This partnership will serve as a vehicle for growth, opportunity and progression for both organizations and the industry in general. We are excited and looking forward to seeing the evolution of our partnership”, Janelle LeBlanc, President, AFA Canada.
“Strong independent retailers in the footwear, apparel and accessory industries are essential to maintaining and growing a vibrant retail sector in communities across Canada,” said Diane J. Brisebois, President and CEO, Retail Council of Canada. “Helping these retailers and vendors remain vibrant and expand has never been more important. “
About Association of Footwear + Apparel Canada
AFA Canada is the country’s premier source for sales and marketing assistance to retailers and wholesalers within the footwear, apparel and accessory industries through events and education.
Our elected Board of Directors is comprised of fourteen volunteer members, with an executive team of three. All members are leaders in the industry with a breadth of experience within the wholesale and retail industries.
A key function of AFA Canada is the production of AFA Expo – a bi-annual trade show created for the sole purpose of putting buyers and sellers together under one roof. The show also offers education and networking opportunities.
About Retail Council of Canada
Retail is Canada’s largest employer with 2.1 million Canadians working in our industry. The sector annually generates over $76 billion in wages and employee benefits. Core retail sales (excluding vehicles and gasoline were $377 billion in 2019. Retail Council of Canada (RCC) members represent more than two thirds of retail sales in the country. RCC is a not-for-profit, industry-funded association that represents small, medium, and large retail businesses in every community across the country. As the Voice of Retail™ in Canada, we proudly represent more than 45,000 storefronts in all retail formats, including department, grocery, specialty, discount, independent retailers, and online merchants.
For more information or to schedule media interviews, contact:
Retail Council of Canada