In Brief: BICOM wins Volkswagen account

Plus, SportChek sales surge back for Canadian Tire and Camden continues to expand.

BICOM named PR AOR for Volkswagen

Following a competitive RFP process, BICOM has been selected as the strategic PR agency of record for Volkswagen Canada.

The agency’s mandate covers influencer and traditional media relations for the automaker’s new vehicle launches and brand initiatives, as well as supporting its CSR efforts. A main focus will also be around “Way to Zero,” Volkswagen’s plan to become a carbon-neutral company by 2050.

Volkswagen previously worked with Hill+Knowlton on PR in Canada.

Canadian Tire sales continue to surge in Q1

For the three months ended March 31, comparable sales at Canadian Tire stores were up 19.2% year-over-year, with Mark’s growing by 22%.

While that continues trends the retailer has been seeing recently, there has also been a change of fortune at SportChek and its other sports banners: after dealing with sagging demand for much of last year and having to shutter its National Sports banner, comparable sales in sports grew by 18.7%, attributed to strong demand for home fitness equipment and gear for outdoor activities.

Sales for its exclusive and private label brands – such as Canvas, Mastercraft and Helly Hansen – grew by 29%.

Ecommerce sales are also continuing to surge, up 257% year-over-year across all retail banners and by nearly 400% at Canadian Tire alone. The retailer also pointed strong momentum for its Triangle Rewards loyalty program: it added over 400,000 new members, who accounted for 56% of retail sales and grew their average spend by 15%.

Camden adds eight across offices

Montreal-based Camden is continuing with its goals for growth, making several new additions across departments and offices.

On the creative team, the agency’s Montreal office has hired French-language copywriter Victoire Pottiez from Forsman & Bodenfors, English-language copywriter Olivier Lasselle from Altitude Sports and content creator Sarah Oirdighi from Empower. In Toronto, it has also hired junior art diretor Fin Christoforidis from London agency Ekstacy.

Joining recently hired VP of client services Fanny Landrieu in Montreal are account director Lisa Dupont and project manager Angélique Boulet. In Camden’s Toronto media hub, it has also hired Snehdeep Kaur from Canyon Entertainment Group as an ad operations specialist.

Rounding out the new hires is Pui Sum Fong, who joins Camden from client-side roles at L’Oreal and Aldo as an account director, leading Asia Pacific clients from its recently opened Hong Kong office.