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McNally Robinson back from bankruptcy protection, still hates Shops at Don Mills

Winnipeg-based independent bookseller McNally Robinson emerged from bankruptcy protection on Monday with plans to restructure the company.

This comes a month after the company was forced to shut down one of its Winnipeg locations and the Toronto Shops at Don Mills store. Founder Paul McNally has been vocal about the Toronto shop being one of the company’s biggest mistakes and blamed the shopping centre for an array of problems.

“I don’t know if anyone was as disappointed as us, but we were surely deeply disappointed,” McNally told the CBC. “It was clear from the opening sales at Don Mills that we had entered into a death spiral.”

Two stores, one in Winnipeg and another in Saskatoon, remain under the McNally name.

McNally Robinson emerges from bankruptcy protection [CBC]

  • Julia

    Correction: the owner’s name is Paul McNally.

  • Toronto Life Staff

    Thanks, Julia. It’s been corrected.

  • Mark

    “…entered into a death spiral.” Just a wee bit dramatic, but you know what, The Shops at Don Mills hasn’t advertisted properly. Like I’ve read before there are tons of people who live in Toronto and don’t know that it’s there. And for Mark McEwin to say he’s doing fine, well, he’s a popular Toronto based Chef, he SHOULD be doing well. Cadilliac Fairview needs to realize just because you build a “higher-end” mall, doesn’t mean everyone’s going to know about it. Plus you can’t even see it from the road. It’s hidden in the back. Oh one more thing, an outdoor mall in Canada, give me a break! Do you know it becomes VERY VERY cold from December-March? We don’t want to be outside freezing trying to shop. We shop to escape.. Life, weather, family..

  • George

    Right, Paul. It had nothing to do with your HIGH PRICES and AWFUL restaurant, right?

    Right. Let’s blame Shops at Don Mills for trying to uplift the area and increase property values.

    No I do not work for Cadillac Fairview.
    No I am not an employee at Shops at Don Mills.
    No not not an employee of McNally.

    I live in the area and hope Chapters comes in.

  • George

    Actually on second thought: Chapters should only come in if they are willing to lower their prices to what they sell their books online for–otherwise don’t bother.

    Do you know that in almost ALL circumstances, they are over 100% MORE EXPENSIVE IN THE STORE????

    People, start ordering ONLINE and they will listen!

  • cw

    um… I am not a retail expert, but I would think that charging a lower price for online purchases it a marketing strategy that compensates for self-serve and waiting a few days for your purchase to be delivered. In store purchases may cost more due to a larger overhead such as service, displays, and cleaning up after customers. Just my guess though.

  • Mark

    Thank god we’ve got a scapegoat in Chapters and good old Starbucks.. Because it seems like we’ve got those 2 things on every corner in Toronto.. Why not have another one of those at Shops at Don Mills.. We always need more huge conglomerations to take out the Ma and Pa book shops anyway..

    George just because you’re telling me to buy my books online doesn’t mean it’s going to happen.. I, as with many others, like going in the stores and being social.. It’s a new trend.. Gets you out, beyond your monitor..

    So they may have been a bit more expensive, well, welcome to the city! That happens, ALLOT! Too bad we can’t help a Canadian based company a bit more.. Instead of just the same old stores that we keep seeing, over and over again!

  • Laura Rogers

    I sincerely hope that Tory and Paul McNally get sued by Cadillac Fairview for defamation. It is simply not CF’s fault that the McNally’s lack basic business training.

  • Sue

    I don’t know where you live but very very cold is Edmonton, not Toronto. They have outdoor malls and they are thriving.

  • Melanie

    If you really love books spending time in a real book store is a joy and how would you know what to buy on the internet if you hadn’t seen the real thing? I live in Vancouver and coming to the Saskatoon store is something to look forward to. Good things cost a bit more and this store has the choise and the atmosphere. Of course our retail world is going to hell because of tasteless people. the bottom line isn’t all.

  • Eric

    The McNallys only have themselves to blame, letting their daughter and her woefully mal-adjusted passive-aggressive husband run the toronto shop, while in Winnipeg they rushed to close their Portage Place store to expand into Polo Park. Had the company not been spread so thin, Don Mills and its amazing staff would have been an unparalleled success.

    Yes, I used to work for the McNallys. And I will never forgive them for stabbing us in the back like they did on December 26th, 2009.