Aegis Brands, the parent company behind well-known coffee chain Second Cup, opened its first cannabis retail shop in Toronto this week.
Hemisphere Cannabis Co. opened on July 10 at 1703 Avenue Rd. in Toronto at the corner of Avenue Road and Fairlawn Avenue in a location that formerly housed a Second Cup café.
The company’s plan calls for six additional cannabis stores to open before the end of year, and more on the way.
“We created Aegis with the vision of building a portfolio of amazing brands that can grow and flourish by leveraging the expertise that we’ve developed over 40 years in the Canadian retail and foodservice industry,” says Steven Pelton, CEO of Aegis Brands. “Given our unparalleled access to top tier real estate assets across the country, and the incredible shared services that Hemisphere will be able to tap into as part of the Aegis network, we truly believe the potential for this brand is limitless.”
According to a press release, the name Hemisphere was inspired by the idea of navigation and the in-store experiences are built around the idea of helping consumers find their way in the cannabis purchase journey.
Aegis explains that “budtenders” have been specially trained to provide a guided selection experience for those who need it.
“It’s no secret that we’ve been exploring opportunities within the cannabis space since early in 2018, and we’re thrilled to finally be celebrating the launch of Hemisphere Cannabis Co. in Canada,” says Pelton. “With Hemisphere, we’ve created an environment that’s entirely focused on matching customers with the right product for their desired experience — whether they’re shopping for cannabis for the first time ever, for the first time in a long time, or for the first time today.”
Three more Hemispheres stores will be opening in Toronto in the next few months, including one at 518 Eglinton Ave. W. in Forest Hill.