The Legion has owned its building at 402 Victoria St. since 1926, but that will change next year if a proposed sale is finalized. Photo: Tyler Harper

The Legion has owned its building at 402 Victoria St. since 1926, but that will change next year if a proposed sale is finalized. Photo: Tyler Harper

Nelson Legion to sell its building to tech company

Traction on Demand will purchase the building while the Legion will lease space

The home of the Nelson Legion is set to be sold to a tech company next year.

A memorandum of understanding was approved Sunday by the Branch 51 membership that will sell the building at 402 Victoria St. to Malberry Holdings, which is owned by Nelson native Greg Malpass.

It’s expected Malpass will use the building for his company Traction on Demand, which he said in October would open an office in Nelson in 2019.

The proposed deal would also include a 20-year lease of the lounge and basement to the Legion, which has occupied the building since 1926.

Branch 51 president Bill Andreaschuk said financial struggles motivated the Legion to consider its options, and that the sale will secure the organization’s future.

“It’s a breath of life to the Legion,” he said.

Andreaschuk said he believes the deal will be done by mid-January. Financial details were not disclosed. A spokesperson for Traction on Demand said the company would decline comment until the sale was finalized.

The Legion had other offers on the building, according to Andreaschuk, but none that would allow its 307 members to stay put. He called the deal with Malpass a win-win for the Legion and the community.

“We contribute an awful lot of money to the community, the veterans, the seniors groups. We wanted to keep that going,” said Andreaschuk.

“Our big push was yes, the Legion has been in that building since 1926, but is the legacy actually the building or what the Legion does for the community? We felt the legacy that we want to have is the service to the community and to be able to keep that service going.”

Malpass previously told the Star that he expects a team of 25 employees will operate in the Nelson office, and that many will be local hires.

Traction on Demand, which was founded by Malpass in 2007, currently employs approximately 450 people with offices in Burnaby, Toronto, Montreal and Houston.

Related: Tech company to open office in Nelson



tyler.harper@nelsonstar.com

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