The Scarlet Tassel

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Home Accessories and Gifts Business Plan

Executive Summary

One of the nation's top interior designers, Dan Carithers of Atlanta, said, "If I had $500,000 to spend on a room, I'd spend $400,000 of it on the accessories . . . A sofa's a sofa, a rug a rug, but accessories are how you can sense what a person is all about. They are the most important ingredient in decorating . . . It's the accessories that create the "I'm home" feeling." Source: Atlanta Magazine Shops Fall 2001

The Scarlet Tassel is a start-up retail store offering eclectic home accessories and gifts to consumers wanting to create a personalized home environment - that "I'm home" feeling. The Scarlet Tassel is planning to locate in the Sandy Springs/Lower Roswell area of Atlanta, Georgia catering to middle- and upper-class consumers who look beyond the national home accessory and gift chain stores for those expressions of individual personality and style. In addition to the offering of unique products, unparallel customer service, quality, value will complement the customer experience. In Year Two, The Scarlet Tassel will develop its online presence at In Year Three, The Scarlet Tassel will move to e-commerce, shipping directly to its web customers. The Web will be an extension of the store concept - a virtual business card and portfolio for the company - its online "home."

Growth plans for The Scarlet Tassel include an expectation of quite comfortable total revenue Year One. Year Two will develop services and marketing plans, in addition to the Web presence, so that a 30% growth rate is realized. Year Three expectations of further growth with development of e-commerce and continued awareness by the consumer are set at approximately 20%. It is the feeling of both owners that these expectations are realistic and attainable.

Deirdre Staab and Shelly Dozier-Mckee, bring a combined 36 years of experience to this venture with expertise that crosses merchandising, marketing, purchasing, forecasting, operations and direct import sourcing. The Scarlet Tassel, Inc. is an S corporation. Deirdre and Shelly each have a 50% share of the business and equity investment. Additional funding is needed for asset purchases and start-up costs to make The Scarlet Tassel a reality.

1.1 Mission

Company Mission
A celebration of the home, The Scarlet Tassel is a store for the quality- and style-conscious consumer. Providing unique, eclectic and affordable home accents and gifts, we intend to generate a fair return to finance continued growth and expanded community involvement.

Customer Creed
The Scarlet Tassel will inform, inspire and show you, our customer, how to create an expression of yourself within your home. Through custom services, smart pricing and a sense of trust, it is our desire that you will look to us as your valued resource to achieve a personalized home environment.

Employee Pledge
Our employees will enjoy a friendly, fair, and creative work environment, which respects diversity, new ideas, and hard work.

1.2 Keys to Success

The primary keys to success for the company will be based on the following factors:

  • SELL products that provide quality and value to the consumer while meeting needs for an expression of personal style.

  • PROVIDE custom services such as in-store workshops and personalized promotions so that customers are retained to generate repeat purchases and make referrals.

  • COMMUNICATE with our customer base through print magazine advertising, postcard mailings and via our website.

  • ESTABLISH a visible, accessible and welcoming storefront and website to position us as the premier choice for our products and services within the marketplace and beyond.

  • ENSURE through daily management practices the values of The Scarlet Tassel's mission are followed so that a successful and growth-oriented business is developed and maintained.

1.3 Objectives

  • Maintain a direct cost of sales of 45% or less, and gross margin of 55% or greater.
  • Maintain operating expenses to equal or less than that of plan.
  • Generate total revenue of $626,000 in Year One.
  • Develop an Internet presence in Year Two.
  • Take Internet presence to e-commerce in Year Three.
  • Realize an annual growth rate of approximately 30% in Year Two.
  • Realize an annual growth rate of approximately 20% in Year Three.