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SUPER HARBOR | October 2017

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The Evolution of a Creative Entrepreneur-50 Limes

The Evolution of a Creative Entrepreneur-50 Limes
Fikriyyah George

Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or not the adage it takes two to tango is real in love and business. It’s commonly accepted that businesses with partners or co-founders are more successful than ones without. None is that more apparent than with 50 Limes.

Entrepreneur(s)- Co-founders Valerie Wray and Stacey Wade

Company– 50 Limes, an e-commerce site selling clothes and accessories where nothing is more than $50.

Background- Valerie always had a love of fashion but it wasn’t till Stacey encouraged her that they started 50 Limes almost a year ago. “50 Limes is for any woman” according to Valerie. “It’s affordable fashion. “[At] 50 Limes you can find stuff you won’t necessarily find in the mall, and you will not spend an arm and a leg to look good.”

How To Split Up a Partnership

Stacey’s “in charge of the creative and graphic design and the logistical part of the business so he fulfills orders, he does the website design, he does the photography at times,” according to Valerie. He also handles the social media and email marketing while she handles all the purchasing and the PR.

“If he was highly into the fashion there might be some fights. He leaves the fashion side completely up to me,” Valerie said with a laugh with a slight hint of Southern drawl. While Valerie’s lived in Brooklyn and currently resides in Harlem, she originally hails from Kentucky.

“I always knew I wanted to do something in fashion, but I didn’t know how I could do it at the time by myself.” Some of the benefits of having a partner according to Valerie is spreading the risk, and sharing the amount of capital, both time and money between two instead of one.

“We really could not do 50 Limes without one another. That’s impossible. I can find cute clothes all day but I wouldn’t know where to begin with” the other aspects of running the business. She collaborates with her business partner, based in Kentucky, through FaceTime, Skype, and phone.

Day to Day

Taking care of the supply side was tricky at first for Valerie. She bought a wide style of clothing to offset the uncertainty as to who their demographic was. Once they narrowed down their demographic the new challenge became how to find them on limited resources.

Being an online entrepreneur works for Valerie. “If this was a brick and mortar I would be in a lot of trouble. I work in the music industry so even though it’s a corporate job a lot of times I don’t have to get there till 10am. I have a ton of time in the morning. It’s great. I can buy from my suppliers 24 hours a day. A lot of my suppliers are in LA. When I get off of work I have three more hours to talk to my suppliers.”

In the Future

There’s no cold feet or lack of commitment on either of the business partner’s side. Their future is well thought out. Together they recently advertised with Black & Sexy TV, the popular YouTube series now getting an HBO counterpart. They plan to advertise on more YouTube channels and series.

“Social media is the way to go.” That’s why if Valerie could add people to the team it would be a social media person to keep up with the changing trends their young demographic is known for abetting and a fellow fashion person to bounce ideas off of.

“I want to sell shoes, but right now…its just clothing and accessories. I would love to have 50 Limes have a private label and us making our own clothes. That’s definitely in the pipeline. In order to stay in business we have to keep investing. We’re growing and that’s what’s important.

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