NEW YORK —
For many would-be entrepeneurs, the cost of opening a store in New York and other U.S. cities is prohibitive. But from coast-to-coast, the traditional model for retail stores is taking a new direction - on four wheels.
Meet Jessie Goldenberg. She borrowed money and converted an old delivery truck into a trendy boutique. She says being mobile keeps her overhead down. Most of all, she escapes those pricey New York rents.
“It’s all, it’s skyrocketing. It was unaffordable for me as a young business owner to start a boutique that was in a brick and mortar store in the city and pay the rents," said Goldenberg.
Jessie’s Nomad Boutique carries clothing and jewelry mostly by local designers who specialize in one-of-a-kind items. This year, Jessie turned a profit. She attributes that to having created a new experience for shoppers.
“I think the intimacy is different, you know, and the convenience, you know, we’re here, it’s their lunch break. We’re right outside their door, they can come in," said Goldenberg.
Goldenberg is part of a growing number of young entrepreneurs who bring their products to the customer…and sometimes the consumer has more than two legs.
This mobile shop for canines, called With Love Ivan, is named after Dina DelRusso’s pet, Ivan.
The truck shop, filled with treats for dogs, travels between New York and New Jersey every day.
It began with a stomach problem.
“.... my dog had some sensitivities to chicken. So I started making my own treats for him. My neighbor, who is a dog walker, asked me if I could make some pupcakes for a dog she walked and have a birthday party for him. So I did. And then from there I just started making different treats for different people and, I thought, why not get a truck and be like the ice cream man for dogs," said DelRusso.
DelRusso says her best selling treat is called Pupcakes.
"I make them with human grade organic ingredients," she said.
DelRusso keeps costs down by having a small inventory
"I thought why not be mobile. I can be anywhere. If it doesn’t work in one spot, I can easily move to another. That’s kind of how it started," she said.
Ivan is her taste tester.
“So this is carrot and oat, and this has a beef liver treat on top. This is peanut butter and bacon cookie," said DelRusso.
DelRusso says in the near future there will be more WITH LOVE IVAN trucks on the road.
Jessie Goldenberg also is thinking big: more trucks, perhaps a traditional storefront, and a brand name for her line of clothing.
Camera: Daniela Schrier, Gary Jaffe. Video editing: Daniela Schrier