Pet supplies retailer to open 50 stores

Pet Supplies Plus is expanding its footprint, both through franchising and corporate-owned stores.

The retailer is celebrating the first weekend of April with five new store openings in four different states, including Texas, Florida, Illinois and Iowa. Its new location in Florida, in Winter Park, will be among the first to roll out a community room, a meeting space that customers can reserve free of charge to network with pet parents of similar breed dogs, host birthday parties, adoption events or community group meetings.

In 2017, Pet Supplies Plus opened 33 franchise stores and 12 corporate stores, including entering three new states, giving it a total of some 425 locations. This year, the brand is on track to open 50 stores.

"We have loyal, repeat business because our neighbors truly look forward to the experience we provide them when they walk through our doors,” said Pet Supplies Plus CEO Chris Rowland. “Pet parents shop with their pets not just because it's convenient, but because they want social interaction for them and their pets. You can't get that by shopping online."

The 30-year-old pet product retailer provides a wide selection of natural pet foods, goods and pet services at low prices, and by focusing on a unique, rich in-store experience for "neighbors" (the term Pet Supplies Plus uses for customer).

Stores also are known for fun, pet-bonding events designed to socially connect pet parents in the community. Other neighbor-centric features include self-pet wash stations, and new pet parent education.

The retailer is currently testing an order online and in-store pickup program, called You Click. We Fetch, in multiple locations. Neighbors can order online, have items ready for easy pickup at the store and carried out to their car. Online shoppers will also receive special offers on products and services (grooming, pet washes) and invitations to local store events.

"Everything we do goes back to our passion for pets, celebrating the fun of pet ownership and connecting with like-minded people," Rowland added.