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New owners take over Canadian Tire

New owners of Canadian Tire arrived in Yellowknife last Tuesday from Ontario.
Darcy Southam, left, and his wife, Achla Dhalla, are the new owners of Canadian Tire’s Yellowknife location. They hired artists to paint the Canadian Tire stores that they owned in the past, and they are looking forward to doing the same in Yellowknife. Kaicheng Xin/NNSL photo

Husband and wife Darcy and Achla Southam are the new owners of Canadian Tire’s Yellowknife location.

The couple arrived in Yellowknife on March 28, and the store was turned over to them two days later as former owners Jason and Karen Butorac are relocating to Ontario.

Darcy said he thinks Yellowknife is a beautiful place.

“I’m originally from Saskatchewan, so the cold weather is not too much of a concern for us.” he said. “Everybody is extremely friendly. We lived in other communities — if you are an outsider, they’re not quite as welcoming as Yellowknife. Even when we just arrived here… we felt everyone is welcoming and embracing us with open arms. We’re just looking forward to being more involved in Yellowknife and to being supportive.”

The capital marks their third Canadian Tire journey. Darcy managed his first store for two years in Newfoundland and Labrador and then moved on to the next one in Dundas, Ont., on the outskirts of Hamilton. During their seven years in the latter location, the couple expanded the store and renovated it.

The biggest difference between Hamilton and Yellowknife is the weather, according to Darcy, and based on that, vehicles in Yellowknife might need additional products such as block heaters and battery blankets, he suggested.

During the weekend, the Southams took a drive on the ice road.

“We saw the castle that they built. We are looking forward to enjoying that in the next year,” Darcy said.

Although many Yellowknife businesses are confronting staff shortages, Canadian Tire isn’t in that predicament and Darcy said he’s hoping to retain existing employees. He’s also hoping to get feedback from residents on how the store can better support the community.

He added that the Butoracs had done a good job contributing to the community and he’s aiming to continue where they left off.

About the Author: Kaicheng Xin

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