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Mahogany Western Wear

Executive Summary

Opportunity

Problem

There is a growing demand for a apparel store that caters to the African-American cowboy community in Houston Texas.

Solution

Mahogany Western Wear’s mission is to offer quality, name brand western wear in an assortment of sizes and styles to accommodate all varying body styles and shapes.

Market

The goal of Mahogany Western Wear is to serve the local African-American cowboy community that have difficulty finding western clothes that fit their larger frames. We will also serve the Hispanic community which tends to have a slimmer yet shorter frame.

Competition

Mahogany Western Wear has three competitors within a 15 miles radius of its location. Cavender’s Boot City, Barbecue Hall of Fame, Turner Saddlery is approximately 12.1 miles from Mahogany Western Wear and is the farthest of the three competitors.

Why Us?

We are African-American owned and plan on becoming a central hub of shopping activity for the local African-American cowboy population as well others who enjoy wearing western apparel.

Expectations

Forecast

The company will start with three months inventory on hand for apparel and accessories as this is the main revenue generator. The majority of the company’s assets will reside in inventory. The opening days cash on hand balance will be $18K.

Successful operation and building a loyal customer base will allow Mahogany Western Wear to be self sufficient and profitable.

Financial Highlights by Year

Chart visualizing the data for Financial Highlights by Year

Financing Needed

The purpose of this business plan is to secure a $27,000 ACCION loan. This supplemental financing is required to work on site preparation, inventory, and operational expenses. The loan amount appears in the long-term liability row of the start-up summary. Other financing will include an owners investment of $35,000 and a short term revolving line of credit of $20,000 for inventory replenishment during months of high receipts.

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Opportunity

Problem & Solution

Problem Worth Solving

There are several important needs in the western wear apparel business that are being either underserved or not met at all. 

  • There is a need for a large assortment of sizes to compliment the various body shapes and sizes of the ethnic community. This is a size segment that is missing throughout the larger western wear apparel retailers in the city.
  • There is a need for a focus  and attention to customer’s personal preferences and customer retention will be given high priority. Because of the high rate of employee turnover at major mass retailers, customer service and personal detail has been  lost.

Our Solution

Mahogany Western Wear is a new apparel store that caters to the African-American cowboy community in Houston, Texas. As our name suggests our focus is to provide western wear apparel and accessories, and position ourselves as the top retail store servicing this particular market.

We are the first and only African-American owned western apparel store in the city of Houston. Our intentions are to obtain 80% market share and become a central hub of shopping activity for the local African-American cowboy population as well others who enjoy wearing western apparel.

Target Market

Market Size & Segments

Market Description

The primary target customer of Mahogany Western Wear will be the African-American cowboys located in the southern part of Houston, TX.  As we are situated in the epicenter of their residential community we believe they will make up the largest percentage of our customer base.

The secondary target customers are the Hispanic community in the area. As the Hispanic population continues to grow rapidly in the south central area we expect to receive the patronage of Hispanics as they are very loyal to western apparel.

The last target customer of Mahogany is listed as other. As popularity about the store increases we expect to see an assortment of curiosity seekers, and local residents from the community as well as seasonal purchasers during rodeo season.

Market Segmentation

We have three particular market segments that we plan on catering to: 

First, the  growing number of African-American cowboy population is concentrated heavily in the southwestern part of the city therefore leading to the highest concentration of our customer base. 

Second, the growing  number Hispanic community, which is a growing population in the community in which the store is located, has statistically shown to be loyal to the major western brands such as Wrangler.

 Last, the potential customers is labeled as "other." Because Mahogany Western Wear offers a variety of western and southwestern wear apparel, along with accessories and gifts we feel that we will attract many curious shoppers. Our ambience and customer service will make them repeat customers.

Target Market Segment Strategy

The goal of Mahogany Western Wear is to serve the local African-American cowboy community that have difficulty finding western clothes that fit their larger frames. We will also serve the Hispanic community which tends to have a slimmer yet shorter frame.

Both of these markets are underserved in the major western retailer outlets.

Market Needs

There are several important needs in the western wear apparel business that are being either underserved or not met at all. Mahogany Western Wear plans to meet and service those needs.

  • Mahogany will provide a large assortment of sizes to compliment the various body shapes and sizes of the ethnic community. This is a size segment that is missing throughout the larger western wear apparel retailers in the city.
  • Focus and attention to customer’s personal preferences and customer retention will be given high priority. Because of the high rate of employee turnover at major mass retailers, customer service and personal detail has been  lost.

Market Trends

Millions of people around the world instantly recognize and identify with western apparel. It is synonymous with America and is a true classic.

Western wear has survived many eras. Modern cowboys herd cattle in helicopters but they still wear the same jeans, boots and hats their grandfathers wore. There will always be a future for western apparel. Within the last two years the southwestern and western look has made a comeback in the fashion industry. Mahogany Western Wear intends to use its place in the community to heighten the awareness of the African-American cowboy culture in Houston, TX.

With the increase of participation by professional African-American cowboys such as five-time World Champion professional calf roper Fred Whitfield from Houston, TX more people are becoming aware of African-Americans role and contribution in the cowboy community.

Market Growth

Market growth is in an upward motion, despite some of the latest economic downturns in the Houston metro area. According to a report by the City of Houston Economy & Trade, Houston ranked second in the rate of job growth among the nation’s 10 largest cities during 2000. Although for the time being, Houston will mirror much of the national economy, by the second half of 2002 Houston will again see positive growth as the city is predicted to add another 15,000 jobs. In the 12 months ending in January 2002, the city posted a net gain of 7,500 jobs while the nation as a whole lost 1.2 million. It is important to note that 90% of the new jobs are in the non-energy dependent sectors thereby adding to the city’s economy and economic diversity.

Houston has also been designated as the best city in the U.S. to start a new business. For three consecutive years, Houston has ranked first in the nation in new business growth, according to American Business Information. The most recent survey shows that more than 31,000 new local businesses were started in Houston. Los Angeles, California was a distant second with 16,780.

For these reasons and  more, Houston is considered an economic leader in America. Economy.com has analyzed America’s 40 largest metro areas and predicts Houston’s Gross Area Product will do better than any other city through the second quarter of 2002. Industry Week named Houston one of 12 world class cities for manufacturing and Black Enterprise has ranked Houston as the top U.S. city for blacks based on income potential, cost of living, proximity to employers, cost of housing and 21 quality-of-life factors.

Competition

Current Alternatives

There are three current alternatives to Mahogany Western Wear: 

Cavender’s Boot City, which is located approximately 7.1 miles from our location is our closest competitor. Cavender’s is one of the largest western wear apparel stores in the state of Texas. They operate 42 stores and sell basic western wear apparel and boots to the general mass market. Because of Cavender’s size they have a large percentage of the market share but still only cater to what the apparel industry considers to be the average size. Locating plus size clothing for women and big and tall sizes for men can be extremely difficult. They also tend to be a bit behind the market in offering more contemporary western styles. Because of Cavender’s size they have also lost some of their customer service skills as employee turnover is high.

Barbecue Hall of Fame, located approximately 9.3 miles from our store. The Barbecue Hall of Fame retail outlet combines the atmosphere of Goode & Co. BBQ restaurant with shopping and a prime tourist attraction. They offer an eclectic mix of old west meets new west with apparel, grills, cookware, and gift items. BBQ Hall of Fame doesn’t do any advertising or promotions of their retail outlet so if you don’t visit The Goode & Co. restaurant you wouldn’t know about the retail establishment.

Turner Saddlery is approximately 12.1 miles from Mahogany Western Wear and is the farthest of the three competitors. Turner Saddlery is a family-owned western apparel with two stores in the Houston area and one store in Conroe, TX. Their customer base tends to be more upscale as they carry more of the high end western labels such as Saddle Ridge and Lucchese. They also carry housewares and bedding items of which Cavender’s and BBQ Hall of Fame does not carry. They have few plus sizes for women and big and tall for men. Also, Turner Saddlery does very little advertising and promotion.

Our Advantages

Our key advantages that make us better than the competition are: 

  • Carry an assortment of sizes to fit the more ample frames of their African-American target customer base.
  • Provide customers with top notch personalized customer service in an atmosphere of southern hospitality.
  • Advertise and promote in areas that our target customer base will learn about our store.
  • Continuously review our inventory and sales and adjust our inventory levels accordingly.

Keys To Success

Keys To Success

In order to succeed in the western wear apparel industry Mahogany Western Wear must:

  • Carry an assortment of sizes to fit the more ample frames of their African-American target customer base.
  • Provide customers with top notch personalized customer service in an atmosphere of southern hospitality.
  • Advertise and promote in areas that our target customer base will learn about our store.
  • Continuously review our inventory and sales and adjust our inventory levels accordingly.
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Execution

Marketing & Sales

Marketing Plan

With Social Media our marketing strategy will focus heavily on sales promotion, niche positioning in the market,  and customer service with loyalty and retention in sales.

  • The marketing budget will not exceed 5% of our gross annual sales.
  • Our promotions will always stay in tune with our company objectives and mission statement.

We plan on maintaining a flexible pricing strategy. We base the product lines that we carry on their reputation and quality as western wear apparel. Most of our lines come with a suggested retail price that we will follow. 

We will also keep an up-to-date Facebook page and Twitter persona with regularly updated content. We will be slow to do promotions over social media, emphasizing useful content instead. Some of that will include community content. 

Our retail location will be the foundation of building our customer base. We will also manage a direct mail program that will focus on our top 50% customers spotlighting any in-house sales and promotions.

Sales Plan

We plan on implementing the following sales strategy: 

  • We will utilize the Retail ICE POS software with every sales transaction. With each purchase the software will record and maintain in its database the customer’s name, address and purchases. This information will be used with our direct mailing program to focus on our top 50% of customers.
  • We will offer a 14 day return/exchange policy to build trust with our customers and maintain retention and loyalty.

Operations

Locations & Facilities

Mahogany Western Wear will be located at 13328 1/2 Almeda Rd., Houston, TX 77045. This space has 1,020 square feet and has been leased for two years. This location is central to the geographical location for the African-American cowboy community in the southern part of Houston, TX. We feel it is essential to our initial and ongoing success that we locate ourselves in the heartbeat of the community. We also strive to create an atmosphere of acceptance and community, as well as a retail environment where individuals can identify and bond with their culture.

All business deliveries and shipments will be handled through the store. The company office will also be housed at this location.

Milestones & Metrics

Milestones Table

Milestone Due Date
Secure D.B.A
Sept 13, 2018
Secure Retail Location Lease
Sept 13, 2018
Apply for Occupancy Permit
Sept 13, 2018
Place Inventory Orders
Sept 13, 2018
Purchase ICE Retail Program
Sept 13, 2018
Contact Utility Company
Sept 13, 2018
Create Store Policies
Sept 13, 2018
Contact Telecheck Guarenty Services
Sept 17, 2018
Order Color Flyers or Postcards
Sept 25, 2018
Purchase Computer / Cash register
Sept 28, 2018
Grand Opening
Sept 28, 2018

Key Metrics

The Key Metrics that help us identify good performance: 

Have sales keep track of our top 6 most popular items that bring in the most sales.  Buying inventory on credit will comprise no more than 20 to 25 percent of our overall cost of goods. We need to focus on keeping our most popular items always in our store. 

We will engage customers on Facebook and Twitter. We will aim to have Social media only promotions comprise 5 percent of sales and 15 percent of inquiries. Our website will show how the traffic flows and we will make sure to engage and link to our partners. 

Return customers should comprise 20 percent of sales rising to over 45 percent. We want our customers to come back for our sales and the new styles. We can keep track of that by customer loyalty programs, have them register in our system so their account comes up whenever they purchase.  We give them incentive to sign up by giving those who return specialized sales. 

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Company

Overview

Ownership & Structure

Our store is a LLP. We have two founding partners, Chandra E. Miller and Derrick L. McCoy. Chandra E. Miller will handle all administrative and managerial duties while Derrick L. McCoy acts as a silent partner.

At the launch we will have one additional full time staffer who helps Chandra with customers who come in the  store. There will be a part time worker who will fill in on lunches or on particularly busy times. We will add one or possibly two positions later, as the need arises. 

Team

Management Team

Chandra E. Miller, co-owner and general manager will be responsible for all administrative functions, purchasing, inventory control, and promotions. She will also act as a part-time sales representative. She has spent over 10 years in accounting, finance and operations management. She was also the owner of Tattletale’s, an e-commerce toy store for three years. She has extensive background in purchasing, inventory control, and marketing.

Personnel Table

FY2019 FY2020 FY2021
Owner $60,000 $61,800 $63,654
Full Time (2.17) $72,000 $100,000 $165,000
Part Time $17,400 $24,000 $30,000
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Financial Plan

Forecast

Key Assumptions

The growth of Mahogany Western Wear will be moderate and the cash balance will always be positive. Being a retail environment we will not be selling on credit. We will accept cash, checks, and all major credit cards. TeleCheck Services will be used as the check guaranty system to help reduce the percentage of loss on bad checks. Marketing and advertising will remain at or below 5% of sales. We will continue to reinvest residual profits into company expansion, and personnel.

Revenue by Month

Chart visualizing the data for Revenue by Month

Expenses by Month

Chart visualizing the data for Expenses by Month

Net Profit (or Loss) by Year

Chart visualizing the data for Net Profit (or Loss) by Year

Financing

Use of Funds

We anticipate $8,000 of pre-launch startup expenses including…

  • Pre-launch rent: $3K One month of prepaid rent
  • Pre-launch fixup: $2K. We will do most of the work ourselves
  • Legal: $1K
  • Prelaunch marketing expense: $2K. Includes branding, logo, social media, pre-launch marketing. We plan to do most of this ourselves. 

We also need $70K pre-launch assets:

  • $18K cash on hand
  • $30K inventory
  • $2K other current assets
  • $20K furniture, shelves, signage, etc. 

Total starting costs are $78K. 

Sources of Funds

We will start with $35,000 of founder investment. We will have a $20,000 dollar line of credit from our bank. We plan on getting a $27,000 Accion loan to help with our startup.  

Statements

Projected Profit & Loss

FY2019 FY2020 FY2021
Gross Margin $284,780 $327,150 $415,969
Operating Expenses
Salaries & Wages $149,400 $185,800 $258,654
Employee Related Expenses $26,400 $32,360 $45,731
Telephone / Cell Phone $1,800 $1,800 $1,800
utilities $4,500 $4,500 $4,500
Rent $30,000 $30,000 $30,000
Marketing $5,400 $5,400 $5,400
Sales $4,800 $4,800 $4,800
Other $6,000 $6,000 $6,000
Amortization of Other Current Assets $0 $0 $0
Interest Incurred $923 $489 $439
Depreciation and Amortization $1,500 $1,500 $1,500
Gain or Loss from Sale of Assets
Income Taxes $5,406 $5,450 $5,714
Total Expenses $584,194 $677,949 $872,944
Net Profit $48,651 $49,051 $51,431

Projected Balance Sheet

Starting Balances FY2019 FY2020 FY2021
Cash $18,000 $29,908 $58,642 $111,312
Accounts Receivable $3,418 $3,221 $4,092
Inventory $30,000 $99,963 $127,083 $127,083
Other Current Assets $1,000 $1,000 $1,000 $1,000
Total Current Assets $49,000 $134,289 $189,947 $243,487
Long-Term Assets $15,000 $15,000 $15,000 $15,000
Accumulated Depreciation $0 ($1,500) ($3,000) ($4,500)
Total Long-Term Assets $15,000 $13,500 $12,000 $10,500
Accounts Payable $10,000 $33,926 $42,062 $42,062
Income Taxes Payable $1,723 $1,363 $1,427
Sales Taxes Payable $11,541 $11,359 $14,441
Short-Term Debt $2,458 $2,914 $2,985 $3,059
Prepaid Revenue
Total Current Liabilities $12,458 $50,104 $57,770 $60,989
Long-Term Debt $24,542 $22,033 $19,475 $16,864
Long-Term Liabilities $24,542 $22,033 $19,475 $16,864
Paid-In Capital $35,000 $35,000 $35,000 $35,000
Retained Earnings ($8,000) ($8,000) $40,651 $89,702
Earnings $48,651 $49,051 $51,431

Projected Cash Flow Statement

FY2019 FY2020 FY2021
Net Cash Flow from Operations
Net Profit $48,651 $49,051 $51,431
Depreciation & Amortization $1,500 $1,500 $1,500
Change in Accounts Receivable ($3,418) $196 ($871)
Change in Inventory ($69,963) ($27,121) $0
Change in Accounts Payable $23,926 $8,136 $0
Change in Income Tax Payable $1,723 ($360) $64
Change in Sales Tax Payable $11,541 ($182) $3,082
Change in Prepaid Revenue
Investing & Financing
Assets Purchased or Sold
Investments Received
Dividends & Distributions
Change in Short-Term Debt $456 $71 $73
Change in Long-Term Debt ($2,508) ($2,559) ($2,610)
Cash at Beginning of Period $18,000 $29,908 $58,642
Net Change in Cash $11,908 $28,734 $52,669
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