The first Indigo location opened in Burlington Ontario in 1997, created with the desire to bring a unique cultural destination to the Canadian retail marketplace. Indigo Books & Music Inc. ("Indigo"), as it exists today, was created in August 2001 upon the merger with Chapters Inc. Indigo has evolved to become the world’s first cultural department store with locations in all 10 provinces and one territory and also offers an award-winning online experience at indigo.ca. Indigo is now Canada's largest purveyor of ideas and inspirations to enrich your life, with books and eReading, specialty toys, gifts, and lifestyle enhancing products that affordably offer intrinsic quality, beauty and timeless design. The Company also has retail operations in the United States through a wholly-owned subsidiary, operating its first retail store in Short Hills, New Jersey since October 2018. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, the Company employs approximately 5,000 people across Canada. Indigo is a public company, traded on the TSX under the symbol IDG.
As of September 30, 2023, the Company operated 87 superstores under the banners Chapters and Indigo and 83 small format stores, under the banners Coles and Indigospirit. The Company also operates www.indigo.ca, a popular online destination offering millions of products including books, eBooks, toys, stationery, home décor, gourmet confections, electronics, and more.
Averaging over 22,000 square feet, Indigo’s large format stores are designed to be destinations for culture-seekers, offering an inspiring environment conducive to browsing and community-building. Small format stores are typically located in retail shopping centres, street-front retail areas, major airports and central business districts.
The need to understand, connect and engage with customers is deeply important to Indigo. The Company’s plum rewards program reflects the strong focus placed on generating long term engagement from its best customers. Indigo’s plum rewards program includes two tiers: plum, a free points-based tier; and plum PLUS, a fee-based tier that allows members to collect points, save an extra 10% on almost everything and enjoy free shipping every day.
Both tiers of the program offers members the opportunity to earn points faster by taking advantage of bonus point promotions and targeted promotional offers. Among other exclusive offers, members can take advantage of invitations to special events, early access to sales and inspirational book and product recommendations.
Books and book products are the Company’s core products with approximately 15 million book titles currently available online and a reduced curated assortment in stores. The Company continues to support eReading via the Kobo service on a variety of devices available to Canadians. Indigo customers can find eBooks on indigo.ca, which links directly to the Kobo site for purchase.
Indigo is a one-stop destination for gifts to touch the heart, mind and soul. The Company continues to develop and expand its proprietary gift and lifestyle merchandise as part of its focus to provide customers with increasingly meaningful and life enriching merchandise, the help them live life with intention, while improving operating margins.
!ndigoKids® mission is committed to supporting parents and dedicated to the intellectual, social, physical, and emotional well-being of children with a focus on books, specialty toy and kid’s apparel and room décor through our private brand launches of Wonder Co.™ and Mini Maison™. The Company currently offers the IndigoKids experience in all 89 large format locations. A further expanded assortment of books, toys, birthday gift ideas and loot bag essentials is also available online at indigo.ca. Indigo is proud to be the exclusive retailer of American Girl® in Canada. Today, Indigo operates six American Girl specialty boutiques across Canada and is now selling its entire assortment of American Girl products online at indigo.ca.
At Indigo, providing the best brands, products and books for your little ones has always been a part of the story. IndigoBaby® offers a wide variety of apparel, bath, feeding, nursery, décor, plush and toy, with an expanded assortment of gear, furniture and items for parents available online at indigo.ca. In May 2019, the Company launched their very own IndigoBaby registry which provides new and expectant parents, family and friends with the opportunity to create and or shop from a registry for all their baby essentials.
To support the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation, Indigo and the Foundation have partnered to donate 1% of net proceeds of each baby and children’s book sold online and in stores to high needs communities.
In the fall of 2021, Indigo will be featuring 12 brands within the Mini Marché shop-in-shop experience -- in an effort to support local Canadian businesses within the kids and baby industries, IndigoKids has launched a program to bring innovative unique brands to our customers with priority given to women-led, BIPOC-led, LGBTQ2+-led, sustainable and philanthropic businesses.
Through its Indigo Love of Reading Foundation, the Company is committed ensuring that all Canadian children have access to books and the opportunity to fall in love with reading. The Foundation’s accomplishes this goal by raising awareness about the literacy gaps that exist in Canadian elementary schools today and works to close those gaps by providing books and educational resources to high-needs elementary schools across the country. The annual Literacy Fund grant provides multi-year transformational grants to school libraries across the country and the annual Adopt a School program is a grassroots program that pairs local stores and schools together to raise funds and awareness about children's literacy issues. Most recently, the Foundation committed $1 million to keep kids reading during the COVID-19 pandemic through the Indigo Love of Reading Community Response Fund. With the support of Indigo, its customers, employees and suppliers, the Foundation has invested over $33 million into more than 3,000 elementary schools across Canada since 2004, benefitting more than 1,000,000 students.
In addition to our Indigo Love of Reading Foundation, Indigo’s FUNdraiser Program offers the opportunity for other not-for-profit, literacy, sports and educational groups to host in-store and online fundraisers. Through both in-store and online campaigns, Indigo has helped more than 1,000 community organizations raise over $1,000,000.