(Gentleman to the left begins to speak) Hi
my name is Michael Rallo, (gentleman to the right begins to speak) and I’m Warren Hinds
and we own Beautyland Beauty Supply in Palo Alto, CA and we’ve been in business um,
about 11 and a half years. We bought in 2004 from the previous owner and she founded the
business here in, uh, 1989. So, the business has been, uh, at the center for over 20 years.
So, after we had looked at brokers and maybe trying to sell the business on our own and
that wasn’t really too successful. I had gotten, uh, direct mailing over the years
and I, uh, uh, stuck a couple of those, uh, letters in a file and, um, when Michael and
I decided that it was really time to move on, um, I pulled one of the letters out and
read it over and then went to the website and looked at some of the, uh, information
there and testimonial videos and, um, (clears throat) thought it might be a good way to
go. After we made the decision, um, to use G. A. Wright, I gave them a phone call and
they put us in touch with a rep and he came up about a week later and spent probably two
hours (Michael interrupts) I would say, yeah (Warren continues to speak) talk, talking
with us um, explaining the process, what we could expect, um, the fact that we’ve have
a onsite consultant that would be here for the entire length of the sale, and, um, would
really help guide us through the whole process. He went over the financials, um, what we would
have as, uh, advertising budget, um, and uh, what the expenses would be. So, it, uh, there
were really no hidden costs, it was pretty well explained to us. (Michael beings to talk)
We felt like it was very clear right from the beginning exactly what to expect. So,
after meeting with the rep, uh, we were kinda given a number that we should expect to hit
with our sales and being the skeptic that I am, I was like “Well, if we can do 50%
of that, I would be really happy.” I said, “I didn’t believe that we could actually
do the number that he had come up with.” I said, “We’re getting a sales pitch here,
you know”, of course, being the skeptic that I am, but I was wrong! (Both Michael and Warren
laugh) (Warren begins to talk) The first day sales were, uh, that single day was half what
we normally do in a month and within the first three days of the sale we had done more in
revenue than we did previous December. Um, I’ve also been tracking, uh, the, daily,
um, number of sales and um, it’s been, consistently throughout the three weeks we’ve been doing
this, two times up to four times even up to a few days, five times the number of sales
that we would typically do on a busy Saturday. (Michael begins to talk) The first day of
the sale, the, the store was just packed full of people and it amazed me how many people
were in the store and how it kept up day after day after day. And now, week after week and
it was amazing how the media and the advertising, how it all kinda came together to really promote
the store and to really pack it day after day. It was pretty amazing. We had two people
working the cash registers at all times, and sometimes there would be four, five, six people
waiting in line. It was pretty amazing. We had kind of a regular clientele here at the
store and we’re seeing a lot of new faces coming in. Not only new faces, but we see
a lot of repeat business of the new faces that are coming in which has been really great.
(Warren beings to talk) We’re three weeks into the sale, and, um, we are very close
to achieving the, already very close to achieving the goal that we had set for ourselves. And
there’s still a lot of product on the shelf and we expect to keep selling. So, that tells
me that the, the margins that um, were preserved early on, and um, it’s very likely we’re
going to exceed our sales target. (Michael begins talking) I believe. (Warren begins
talking) So when we made the decision and I started to investigate G.A. Wright and went
to the website and looked at some of the testimonial videos, I thought they were really compelling,
but, um, I wasn’t convinced. I thought that maybe they’re cherry picking folks and very
successful sales and you know could we really expect that? Could we, could we, was that
a common, uh, common, common results that they would achieve and I’m a believer. What
I would say is what I saw on the videos was what we have experienced. (Michael begins
to talk) I think it’s uh, it’s a real learning experience to actually see how the
whole process works and that you actually do reduce your inventory. You have a good
time, it’s a lot of hard work but it’s been really quite a good experience overall.
I can’t say that there’s a day I came in when I thought “Oh god, I can’t do
this again” and now we just keep going through and it’s been, it’s been actually a really
good experience. (Warren begins to talk) One of the things I was really concerned with
is as a beauty supply store we’ve got hundreds and really thousands of little bottles of
product and it has to be displayed nice. It has to be visually appealing for people to
want to buy, so all through the process while we’ve been condensing the inventory it’s
stayed neat and visually appealing and, um, some clever marketing techniques for, uh, promoting
sales. (Michael beings to talk) And things have been moved around the store that didn’t
uh, perhaps didn’t do as well. They’ve been moved to positions where they’ve been selling
great in the store. There’s been real promotion as far as that goes and it’s been really
good. Not only with the product, but I also, I think also with the fixtures and what not
are nice and neat and clean, and people come in and they’re purchasing little odds and
things that we’re selling also. (Warren begins to talk) So one of the things, um,
that we’ve been told from various people is, um, that when you sell a store, uh, or
when you shut down a store the fixtures don’t have any value. If, uh, a replacement tenant
and they are a corporate replacement tenant, they’ll come in with their own fixtures.
And when we built out the store we, um, spent a good amount on nice fixtures to make the
store look really nice and, um, the consultant has actually sold the fixtures to the walls
and, um, uh, and when we expect to finish, she actually sold them to come in and disassemble
all the stuff and take it away. (Michael beings to talk) Going back to the actual sale of
the business, I, we have exceeded what we have expected we would get from actually selling
our business to as an offer, as an offer, there’s no doubt about it that we’ve definitely
done a lot better with having our consultant orchestrate this sale. Its, its definitely
been more profitable than if we had sold the business. If anyone was to call us and say
how was your experience with G. A. Wright, um, I, I, I, we couldn’t be happier, wouldn’t
you? (Warren interrupts)Yes, yeah, me too Wouldn’t you, don’t you agree? And I mean,
I can’t find thinking about this, I can’t find a single thing that I would say, “Wow
I wish we would have done this different” or “I wish we had done that different.”
I think right from the very beginning we couldn’t have been happier and once we saw the sale
in process and actually got a handle on it working it was pretty amazing (Warren interrupts)
It was amazing. It is amazing and um, I would, I would not hesitate to recommend in a second. (Warren
beings to speak) Remembering when we opened the store and how much effort it was to open
the store, and, this experience has been, uh, as busy closing the store as it was to
open the store, um, it’s been very, very, busy and very encouraging because of the number
of sales we’ve gotten and uh, it’s been an interesting process. Again, its, there’s
a lot of information out there on how to run a business, how to open a business, but, not
a lot on how to, how to do an orderly shut down of a business, to net the most value
out of the inventory and fixtures and G. A. Wright really helped us do that and, uh, I
really feel like with G. A. Wright and especially with the consultant that they lined us up
with, uh, we had the A-Team. (Michael begins to speak) I believe!