On behalf of The Law Office of Lynnette Ariathurai, A Professional Corporationposted in Business Formation & Planning on Thursday, February 4, 2016.
In 1988, two California brothers took a road trip to get inspiration for what to do with their lives. This trip led to them starting an enterprise selling T-shirts. It is not uncommon for young people to start off their careers buying and selling merchandise, but in many cases, no business planning is involved at the onset. The two young men, ages 20 and 23, started with limited funds and purchased a van to travel to different college campuses to sell their merchandise. They say that they failed a thousand times and struggled to make enough money to support themselves from month to month.
Their persistence helped them to persevere until 1994, when, with only $78 in their business account, they came up with the idea to print a positive message on their T-shirts. Their Life is Good line of merchandise was launched, and they say that was the start of their success. They continued their marketing from the van, but the results were disappointing. This was until a small shop bought 24 T-shirts, and sold them all within 14 days. Their sales totaled $87,000 by the end of that year.
They hired their first employee the next year and sold $262,000 in merchandise by the end of that year. They also moved their office from the van to an old shipping container in 1997 and recorded $1 million in sales at the end of that year. Through continued success, Life is Good now has an extensive range of merchandise that is available in 4,500 stores. They have approximately 160 employees, and their sales turnover has reached $100 million. The brothers donate 10 percent of the company’s annual profits to charities that help improve the lives of children.
Although these California brothers have built a successful business over about 28 years, only their determination carried them through the first nine years until their sales reached $1 million. The valuable advice of an experienced business attorney may help to get new enterprises on the track to success much quicker through effective business planning. Building such a relationship with a lawyer from the start may avoid many of the pitfalls that may be encountered as the business grows even more successful.
Source: businessinsider.com, “The fascinating story of how 2 brothers went from running a failing business out of a van to building a $100 million company“, Natalie Walters, Feb. 3, 2016