Valley Entrepreneurs Making a Good Living

July 25, 2008 8:19:43 PM PDT
In the midst of a poor economy some young valley entrepreneurs are making a good living in the retail business.Just a few years ago twenty-somethings Joey and Jonah Pauline were just two guys from Clovis. Today ... they're business owners.

Their most recent endeavor ... The Laundry Room ... in north Fresno. They describe their store as men's and women's casual luxury clothing. The clothes aren't cheap ... and despite the economy ... their clientele is growing.

Jonah Pauline, The Laundry Room: "A lot of those people who have the disposable income to afford clothing like this, they're able to downsize and maximize in those areas that they need to and clothing is one of the last luxuries to go when they do that.

Mary Arujo and Kristi Bigelow opened Inveekarma in north Fresno 18 months ago. Just as the economy was beginning to take a downturn. They opened with high end clothing for men and women ... but as the economy has slowed ... they've made significant changes.

Mary Araujo, InveeKarma: "We originally opened as a 50 percent men's and 50 percent women's ... we are now expanding our men's portion into approximately 70 percent and 30 percent female mix."

Araujo says she and her partner discovered there's a greater demand for men's boutique clothing than women's. They say men are more likely to buy spur of the moment and pay full price. Which is good for any retailer.

So in the midst of high gas prices and plummeting home prices, it appears at least some valley residents are still willing to fork over the extra money to look good.

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