Ancillary Retail

MAY 2018

Ancillary Retail magazine is the retail industry’s resource for ancillary income markets. Ancillary Retail will provide relevant news, best strategies and practical tips to help developers and retailers grow and sustain successful businesses.

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16 Ancillary Retail | May 2018 markets, shopping districts and retail destinations." Spinster Sisters will carry the major- ity of its line at its DIA kiosk, with a large focus on gifts, and travel-sized product. Online ordering will also be available for customers who would like their orders shipped, rather than carrying them on the plane. Spinster Sisters currently occupies three other locations. A location in Golden houses the 5,680-square-foot manufacturing operations, called the "microsoapery," and the company has a retail storefront in Golden. The other location is at the historic Pearl Street Mall in Boulder. Spinster Sisters occu- pies about 3,000 square feet of retail space and has invited other Colorado makers to sell in the space as well, in- cluding Be Hippy. "There's no way I could have filled all that space, so I invited some of my maker friends. I think having a Colora- do maker collective like that is appeal- ing to the local malls," Perkins says. Perkins is actively seeking retail leas- ing opportunities with proven foot traffic. "My sales vary wildly in places with a lot of foot traffic versus a place without it." She is currently working with brokers to find locations in some of the state's tourist and ski cities, such as Breckenridge, Steamboat Springs and Vail. As someone new to retail, Perkins has learned the business on the fly. "For me, the most challenging part is the leases," she says. "In general just making sure you're not signing on the dotted line on something that could potentially put you out of business. There are a lot of expenses: percentage rent, marketing fees, fixtures, signage, maintenance. I've learned that I have to cover myself legally. But I'm going all-in on this business, and with that you have to take some risks. I'm not afraid to do that, and it's definitely paying off." Be Hippy: Growing From Grassroots Bart O'Brien and Leigh Pearson quit their day jobs in 2014 and hit the road to attend music festivals and concerts. They were gone for 3 and half years. While the idea was to break free of life's routines, the odyssey wasn't entirely about having a good time. The shows were a perfect test market for their brand of Colorado lifestyle- influenced apparel and jewelry called Be Hippy. Attending up to four music festi- vals every month, the couple struck a chord with crowds in the jam band and bluegrass scenes. O'Brien and Pearson traveled across the country to shows headlined by the likes of Widespread Panic, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Hard- working Americans, Justin Timberlake, Leftover Salmon, Pearl Jam, The Avett Brothers, String Cheese Incident and Chris Robinson, who is on the fledg- ling company's Instagram wearing a Be Hippy t-shirt during a performance. Road-weary and ready for home, Pearson and O'Brien came back to Denver focused and determined to continue selling direct-to-consum- er and debating the various options available. "Be Hippy's growing social media presence and website business must also benefit from the future di- rection of the brand while maintaining a grassroots approach and a positive customer experience," says O'Brien. Be Hippy signed a 6-month lease with Provenzano Resources Inc. (PRI) and opened its first-ever physical loca- tion at a kiosk in Denver International Airport's (DIA) Concourse B on Feb- ruary 8 of this year. The 4-foot-by-8.5- foot RMU sells some of the company's hats, t-shirts, stickers and jewelry. "The kiosk is allowing us to dip our toe in the water of doing retail solo," O'Brien says. "One of the beauties of the airport is that it's a great place to test market new goods because you've got such a wide pool of people coming through. So far at the airport, eight to nine out of 10 people have never heard of our brand. It allows us to throw new prod- uct out there and get a quick sampling of what people are looking for." O'Brien says business has been good so far, with Be Hippy exceeding its sales goals each day. This is a fortunate outcome for a lot of reasons but is par- ticularly lucky because the company is still learning the ropes of balancing a retail budget, which can come with some surprises to newbies in an envi- ronment like the airport. "Our costs are higher than we an- ticipated because you're dealing with a governmental entity," says O'Brien. "They can fine us $150 if we don't open the kiosk on time. They can fine us if the kiosk is untidy or if employees are standing around on their phones. Leigh and I each work two shifts a week so we know exactly how to train new people and to really know how to manage the business." The airport location is a proving ground for future bricks and mortar growth. O'Brien says he and Pearson plan to open a second kiosk at DIA be- fore the holidays this year, then possi- bly a third kiosk in 2019. "We hope to have at least three ki- osks by the end of 2019," he says. "We also hope that by this time next year, we'll be in a retail space." Currently, most of the business is run out of the Spinster Sisters offers a variety of products and scents. RETAIL PROFILES Be Hippy RMU at the Denver International Airport.

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