How did you get into the industry?
It was destiny that brought me to this beautiful place. My mom introduced me to thrifting back in the 70’s when traditional treasure hunting was a makeup of thrift stores and door-to-door house sales. At the age of 7 or 8, I found my first treasure, a small needlepoint change purse, which I still treasure to this day. From that moment, my ongoing pursuit was the thrill of the next find! Some years later, I had an epiphany. What if all beautiful items were in one place? Little did I know that this thought would manifest itself into my future life purpose.
While an undergraduate at university, I misspent a credit card given to me by my parents. To repay it I did what I knew best – I thrifted for leather jackets, brought them back to my island home in a thrifted suitcase and sold them on the side of the street, recouping $200 more than I owed on the credit card! To earn extra money while in university, I applied and successfully earned a place in GAP Inc.’s Internship Management Program. Unknowingly, I was travelling on a path to a future destination, now known as Orange Bay Company.
In graduate school, the only apartment I could find was on a block of beautiful antique stores. These store owners became my dear friends and would often share their business ideas and concerns. In return, I would share all I learned in pursuit of an MBA in Business Development and Entrepreneurship. Again I landed a job, working in a French parlour, where the finest French threads were on display with merchandising brilliance. And so on. At every milestone, I was gaining traction, manifesting what the universe knew would one day be my ultimate destiny, Orange Bay Company. Each day, I live up to the old adage, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to wok a day in your life”. Thank you Confucius, no truer words spoken.
What’s New in the Business or in the Franchise Model?
This is an extremely exciting time for the thrifting and resale marketplace. With the likes of sustainable shopping and the broadened support around the circular economy, I have seen this industry evolve in leaps and bounds. We are in the midst of a revolution where consumers are experiencing the value of the secondhand find, value in price and value in finding unique, quality pieces that can be repurposed in a variety of ways. Treasure hunting is addictive. Like me, once you find your first treasure, you will be hooked! This, to some extent, is another contributor to the resurgence of this movement. What we have done with Orange Bay Company is made the thrifting model a beautiful, aesthetic experience. There is a strong emphasis on store design, layout, branding and customer service. Merchandising is paramount. We pride ourselves and work incredibly hard on creating a lasting impression on all who experience Orange Bay Company. We know this is what sets us apart.
Where do you See Opportunities or Challenges for the Franchise/Business Moving Forward?
As we continue to mix the tradition of thrifting with business strategy and technology we will see continued opportunities in this market. We remain at the forefront of industry trends and consider all possibilities as we align these opportunities with the fundamentals of our business model. And while we have seen increased selling opportunities available on social media, it is our belief that the world’s first love and preference will always be bricks & mortar and the live experience of a shop, and we have seen many virtual establishments enter the bricks & mortar realm over time. With new items on display each day at Orange Bay Company, the hunt continues!
What is your Goal for the Business Moving Forward?
Over the years we have amassed a substantial following of Orangistas – unwavering supporters, consignors and consumers. As I saw my dreams unfolding through Orange Bay Company, I was continuously approached by our fellow Orangistas who expressed their interest in a similar dream. (Side Note: Didn’t I warn you about the addictiveness of treasure hunting?) Their support of my Orange Bay Company dream, made the decision easy to support their dreams. Orange Bay Company franchising was born. Our goal is to support others as they realize their ardent dreams of being successful entrepreneurs in an industry that gives back to the planet and community through sustainability and social enterprise initiatives. We provide the leadership and direction necessary to be at the forefront of the resale industry and create wealth opportunities in this emerging, billion-dollar business.
Talk to us About Training and Support, How Do You Deliver?
Following the brand and accompanying strategic plan is an important part of our collective success. We are looking for conscientious, diligent and responsible partners to share our vision with. We have invested extensive time and effort to ensure that our training, support and development tools assist newcomers as they become familiar with the business, brand and consignment franchise quickly and efficiently. Through training manuals and hands on involvement, we will help you determine suitable locations, layout and function, merchandising, proper execution of operational procedures and customer service training, and so on. We believe in developing meaningful relationships with our franchisees and we are extremely excited to help others achieve their dreams of entrepreneurship.
Your most difficult moment at the Franchise Business?
All of our greatest opportunities have been disguised as difficult moments waiting for us to pivot with a renewed view, understanding and purpose. Being able to identify the opportunities, reflect on the value of the lessons, consider the numerous possibilities and pivot with the best possible outcome has allowed Orang Bay Company to grow over its 10 years in business. When I think of my franchisees, the following challenges-turned-opportunities come to mind as you build your own Orange Bay Company:
• Starting the business with enough interesting, found pieces prior to having built a substantial consignment base. If you are a keen treasure-hunter this will be fairly easy to accomplish. This curated selection will determine the kind of consignors and customers the business will attract.
• Finding creative staff to execute merchandising and social media posts while remaining on-brand. Over the years, we have found great success through university student hires. Fittingly, providing employment and on-the-job training for students is at the core of our headquarters’ social enterprise initiative.
• Assembling a team who can develop an appreciation for quality, gently-used or pre-loved merchandise, learn the value of unique, vintage or classic pieces, and understand that patina and character are of value in this industry!
How is your Franchise Model Structured?
• What is the Fee Structure? We have an initial Franchise Fee of $30,000 for a single franchise unit and an ongoing royalty structure of 5% revenue share. Our model allows for a low overall investment to create a win-win partnership.
• Territory Definition? Our territories will be defined by each market and country as we are experiencing international interest in our brand which is extremely exciting. Generally, territories will consist of a 100,000 population area with the right demographics to support a franchise enterprise.
What does Your Franchisee Do in the Business Every Day?
At the onset of the business, I expect the franchisee to immerse themselves so they can learn all aspects of the business and fine tune the details of their operational plan. The franchisee will also set the tone for the company culture and customer service. There will be a balance of managing staff and the affairs of the franchise business. As a startup, I recommend taking on one or 2 roles in the company in order to immerse yourself in the business. In this case, enjoying the resale environment is crucial. Training staff to a high standard will be paramount so that you can carve out time for the business affairs, including but not limited to human resources, marketing, accounting and customer service queries.
Who is the Ideal Franchise Candidate?
Calling all Treasure Hunters! Essentially we are looking for candidates who have an appreciation for the vintage and antique eras, who enjoy recycling, upcycling and live some sort of sustainable lifestyle. This is the easiest way to translate this into sustainable picking and selling of the old, new and everything in-between. Their discernment will drive the kind of merchandise that is sourced or consigned in accordance with brand standards. Their passion and appetite for this industry will radiate through their own Orangista family of employees, consignors and customers alike, transforming them into advocates and supporters of the brand.
What Goals Do You Have for the Franchise Model in the Future?
Our intention is to explore and share our love of resale with other likeminded individuals worldwide. As we follow trends closely, and create some of our own, we hope to position Orange Bay Company as a forerunner in this industry. We will take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. And while the thought of growth is exciting, one thing remains certain. No matter how far and wide our roots expand, our aim is to remain flexible, agile and approachable enough to sustain the close knit franchise family approach we envisioned at the onset.
For more information on Delight Morris, Orange Bay Company and the franchise offering, visit the corporate site: https://orangebaycompany.com/