AUG/SEP 2018 The official publication of the Michigan Retailers Association
The man who can’t quit retail BUY NEARBY An exciting partnership with MLive.com A new study shows retail’s impact A state tool for luring developers to your downtown Impression 5’s Rick Melahn
Volume 43 No. 4
Board of Directors ORIN MAZZONI, JR.
Chair Orin Jewelers, Garden City
JAMES P. HALLAN
President and CEO Michigan Retailers Association
BECKY BEAUCHINE KULKA
Vice Chair Becky Beauchine Kulka Diamonds and Fine Jewelry, Okemos
PETER R. SOBELTON
Treasurer Mondial Properties, Birmingham
WILLIAM J. HALLAN
Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel Michigan Retailers Association
Michigan Retailers Services, Inc. Board of Directors JAMES P. HALLAN
President and CEO
Allendale True Value, Allendale
Golden Shoes, Traverse City
Leppink’s Food Centers, Belding
JAMES P. HALLAN
603 South Washington Avenue Lansing, MI 48933 517.372.5656 or 800.366.3699 Fax: 517.372.1303
Past Chair Marshall Music Company, Lansing Little Forks Outfitters, Midland Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island
Credit Card Group
Brandon Tire & Auto Service Center, Ortonville
Neiman’s Family Market, East China Township
Great Northern Trading Co., Rockford
TDU Consulting, LLC, Ann Arbor
Meijer, Inc., Grand Rapids
D. LARRY SHERMAN
Board Member Emeritus
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
About Us Michigan Retailer (USPS 345-780, ISSN 0889-0439) is published in February, April, June, August, October and December by Michigan Retailers Association, 603 South Washington Ave., Lansing, MI 48933. Periodical postage paid at Lansing, Michigan. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to 603 South Washington Ave., Lansing, MI 48933. The Michigan Retailer may be recycled with other white office paper.
With every issue, we reach retail owners, managers and executives who make spending decisions for 15,000 stores and websites across the state. To request a media kit, email Rachel Schrauben at email@example.com.
MICHIGAN JOBS ARE IN THE RETAIL INDUSTRY
IN WAGES $
7 ON THE COVER
THE MAN WHO CAN’T QUIT RETAIL page 10 He set out to be an elementary school teacher. But he ended up owning a store and building expertise in merchandising that keeps bringing him out of retirement.
18 Contents FEATURES
3 BUY NEARBY’S NEW PARTNER We’ve joined with MLive.com to spread the shop-local message.
2 FROM THE CEO
NEW STUDY’S STARTLING STATS MRA commissioned an economic study that shows the impact of buying nearby.
7 LURING INVESTMENT An MEDC program helps communities become “redevelopment ready.” 14 MRA SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS 18
Retailers.com RetailersInsurance.com BuyNearbyMI.com
IN HIS OWN WORDS Scott Hirth talks about The M Den’s rise as a go-to place for University of Michigan merchandise.
3 FIVE TIPS Taking sales to the next level. 5 IT’S THE LAW Why it pays to think like a law student. 6 GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS Next steps after U.S. Supreme Court delivers major retail victory. 8 RETAIL TECH How to avoid a data breach. 9 CATCH-ALL DRAWER Tidbits from around the retail world. 17 JEWELERS SUMMIT SEPT. 30 Nationally renowned training expert Shane Decker shares his expertise. 17 FOOD RETAILERS SUMMIT The lowdown on our Michigan Grocers’ Division annual conference. 20 LOTTERY NEWS
Visit us online to see what’s new in the industry and what services we provide members to strengthen your business.
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MUSINGS MRA fiscal year finishes on a strong note One of my favorite sayings is, “The only constant is change.” It is as true today as it was when the phrase was first coined. MRA’s fiscal year ended on June 30, and like most years, it was a year of change. Good change. I can report to you that the health of Michigan Retailers Association remains strong. In fact, we are healthier and stronger than we were a year ago. The addition of Michigan Grocers as a division of Michigan Retailers certainly helped maintain our upward growth both in terms of sheer membership numbers and financial strength. A few financial highlights are worth noting. Through June 30, total transactional volume that flowed through Michigan Retailers exceeded $1.4 billion dollars, which is up over 4 percent from the previous year. Over 70 percent of our revenue comes from our merchant processing program, which allows us to keep our dues at a competitive level. Dues represent less than 12 percent of our operating income. Most trade associations are heavily reliant on dues so we are very fortunate to have developed a service-providing niche for our members. Our other main revenue sources include income from our insurance operations. Like most companies, our largest expenses are people-related. About 60 percent of our expenses are people-related, while op-
erating expenses such as merchant processing expenses, printing, occupancy, professional fees and taxes make up the majority of our other expenses. While we are still in the process of closing out our fiscal year, and subject to our annual certified audit, we expect to show a very healthy net income. On the legislative front there were many victories, but none more important than the passage of the statewide pre-emption bill that prohibits local units of government from taxing food and beverages. Every year has its own set of changes. Our landscape of changes for next year is already emerging. The key is finding the sun among the ever-present raindrops.
JAMES P. HALLAN MRA President and Chief Executive Officer
MLive.com is our new partner for Buy Nearby Weekend Oct. 5-7
Taking sales to the next level 1
He’s entering his busiest period of the year now, as we ramp up efforts to encourage people to participate in Buy Nearby Weekend on Oct. 5-7.
This year, we’re spreading the message more broadly across the state by partnering with MLive.com and the media outlet’s Michigan’s Best program (you know – the folks who name “Michigan’s Best Doughnut” or “Michigan’s Best Pizza” by polling readers on their favorites).
Customers like it when salespeople give an honest assessment. They’re more likely to buy from you if they believe you’re honest. So don’t overstate the features for a product or service, or minimize shortcomings. It will hurt the store’s reputation in the long run.
Converse with customers – find out what they really want. If a customer needs a frying pan, but mentions they love to make paella, you’re going to steer them – and likely upsell them – on a pan that will much better fit their needs.
Beloved Buy Nearby Guy has been greeting fans and marching in parades all over the state – and maybe you even saw him on the Buy Nearby Instagram and Facebook pages playing the piano during Marshall Music’s 70th anniversary party!
Sure you have great sales associates who greet customers at the door and know your inventory. Here are tips that can help up their game.
2 Challenge perceptions
By MEEGAN HOLLAND
Don’t feel guilty
Once the customer selects their main product, there’s nothing wrong with exploring what else they may need. Someone who buys an outdoor sofa that will be exposed to the elements, suggesting a sofa cover is a good upsell. Never feel guilty about selling merchandise that provides value.
Know your top sellers
Get to know all the details about your 25 top-selling products. Think about possible add-ons, comparisons to other brands, offerings by your competitors and answers to common questions.
Don’t stop learning
Learning sales is an ongoing process. Try to understand why a customer did or didn’t buy from you or how your preconceived ideas or biases may have killed a sale. Think about how you would have approached a customer differently and look for ways to improve. Source: Bob Phibbs, The Retail Doctor
We debuted our partnership with the Michigan’s Best team – John Gonzalez and Amy Sherman – in Bay City, as they unveiled a video as part of their Michigan’s Best Day series. They’ve highlighted fun things to do in Owosso, Dearborn and now Bay City, and we were there to help celebrate and give Buy Nearby Guy some exposure on MLive. Order your free Buy Nearby packet now: Email firstname.lastname@example.org It’s a perfect match, because Buy Nearby and Michigan’s Best are all about promoting hardworking retailers and restaurants that help our communities thrive. You can see more at buynearbymi. com or at mlive.com/michigansbest. Another major initiative this year was to commission an economic study on retail’s impact, conducted by Public Sector Consultants, a highly regarded public policy group in Lansing. See the results of that study on Page 4. We are distributing an infographic and shopping bag stuffers to retailers conveying the fascinating numbers that the study found. If you’d like these shopping bag stuffers and other Buy Nearby materials, email Rachel Schrauben at email@example.com, and she’ll send you a free packet, which will also include stickers and a poster, all publicizing our shop-local efforts and Buy Nearby Weekend on Oct. 5-7. Thanks to DTE Energy and Retailers Insurance Company for sponsoring the Buy Nearby campaign. Their generosity made the MLive campaign and the economic study possible. WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
Economic study shows impact of keeping your money in the Mitten By MEEGAN HOLLAND Michiganders sent $18.5 billion out of state in 2017 – money that could have made a difference in creating jobs and boosting our communities’ vibrancy. Where did the money go? To purchases that consumers made from an online seller, home shopping TV channel or by phone from a catalog, according to a newly released study by Michigan Retailers Association (MRA). “When we encourage people to shop locally, it’s not just to benefit our members across the state,” said James P. Hallan, President and CEO of MRA. “Keeping our shopping dollars in Michigan has a huge impact on our quality of life. We all want to live in communities where everyone feels secure in the knowledge that they can find or maintain a job and that the stores down the street will survive and thrive.” The study, conducted by Public Sector Consultants, looked at the current state of retail in Michigan and the impact if all Michiganders switched just one in 10 purchases from an out-of-state retailer to a store in Michigan. With that modest change in consumer behavior, Michigan would gain a $1.2 billion boost to the economy and almost 10,600 new jobs. Wages would increase by more than $350 million. “Why would we not want that money to stay in Michigan? Our Buy Nearby campaign encourages people to be intentional about their purchasing habits,” Hallan said. “Think before you click – can you easily find that same item at a store down the street? Isn’t it worth the customer service and expertise you receive with an instore
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
purchase? What would you do if that store closed because more dollars were being funneled to online competitors?”
as cleaning services, security staff, accountants and more. And their employees spend money as well.
With 116,000 stores, Michigan’s retail industry employs about 877,000 workers and pays $21.6 billion in wages each year. That’s the direct impact. Indirectly, retailers purchase goods and services, such
“Nearly one of five Michigan jobs are in retail, making it a crucial part of Michigan’s economy” Hallan said. “Keep your money in the Mitten.”
IT’S THE LAW
Think like a law student to avoid costly conclusions The most important word in law school is the word here. All first-year law students learn that good legal writing follows the I.R.A.C. method. Identify the Issue, state the Rule, Analyze the facts, and draw a Conclusion. Surprisingly, in law school, the conclusion rarely matters. Rather, it is detailed analysis that will merit the highest scores. While the approach may seem backwards, thinking like a law student can help retailers avoid costly conclusions.
WILLIAM J. HALLAN MRA Executive Vice President, COO and General Counsel Contact William at firstname.lastname@example.org
Your contracts or purchase orders should plan for the deal to both succeed and fail.
Consider the following fact pattern: Tom is a handyman and frequently performs odd jobs for Mark. They never use written contracts and all of their dealings are by oral agreements. One day, while fixing Mark’s front steps, Mark says to Tom, “I’d love for you to paint my fence. It’s probably about a $500 job, what do you think?” Tom replies, “yeah that sounds like it’s a fair amount, I’ll take a look.” The next day, Tom buys the paint, starts the project and finishes hours later. As Tom is cleaning up, Mark arrives and Tom asks to be paid. Mark refuses to pay Tom and says, “I didn’t agree to pay you $500, I was just talking out loud.” Does Mark owe Tom? The issue is whether a contract was formed. The rule is that a contract requires an offeri, acceptanceii, and considerationiii. Like John Grisham, and for the sake of brevity, we’ll set aside other rules that may or may not apply, such as the statute of fraudsiv, because what really matters in law school is the analysis. In other words, what happened here? The best law students will argue both sides. Here, it’s hard to make the case that Mark’s comment was an offer. He didn’t express certainty on the price and he asked Tom for input as to whether the amount was appropriate. Moreover, Tom’s response was hardly a sufficient acceptance. He agreed to take a look at the project and one might conclude that he needed to confirm with Mark on the specific terms of the deal in order to accept the offer. On the other hand, the parties always made their agreements orally, thus, a court may look to the parties’ prior conduct and course of dealing. For law students, concluding whether Mark owes Tom is irrelevant. What matters is the factual analysis in relation to the legal rules. However, the real world is exactly the opposite and the conclusion is the most important consideration. Take for instance another fact pattern that may hit closer to home: Ellen operates a retail shop that specializes in custom baby gifts. A customer comes in asking to order
monogrammed bottles for her best friend’s surprise baby shower. The bottles must arrive by June 8; the customer gives Ellen a firm deadline and pays a $100 deposit. Ellen contacts her bottle supplier and provides the details for the monogram via email. She states that she needs the bottles by June 6 (giving herself a few days cushion). On June 3, there is a major hurricane and the supplier’s warehouse is damaged. Ellen calls her supplier to check in to see if the bottles will ship in time. The supplier calls the problem an “act of god” and states, “They are working on it and will do their best to get the bottles out the door.” By June 6 the bottles haven’t arrived, Ellen is worried and calls the supplier again. The supplier explains that the bottles were shipped that day and will arrive on June 10. Ellen is furious and claims that she will not pay for the late bottles. While a law professor will want to know whether this scenario is covered by the Uniform Commercial Code or common law, whether time was of the essence, and whether Ellen requested and received adequate assurances, all Ellen wants to know is whether she must pay for the late bottles. Law school questions always fall in the gray area and the facts usually support contradictory conclusions. Similarly, the real world consists of shades of gray. Parties may neglect to memorialize their agreement in writing, or may leave important terms out of their contracts only to discover the error when the deal falls apart. To avoid those treacherous shades of gray, think like a law student in your business dealings. Your contracts or purchase orders should plan for the deal to both succeed and fail. Agreements should be in writing, and include all essential contractual elements such as price, quantity, term and damages (if applicable). Ellen could have saved herself some heartburn by using a purchase order that has clear performance, delivery and terms. If you plan for the conclusion, the analysis (even for a first-year law student) should be the easy part. [i] An offer is a manifestation of a willingness to enter a bargain, so made as to justify another person in understanding that his asset to that bargain is invited and will conclude the deal. §24 Restatement (Second) of Contracts. [ii] Acceptance of an offer is a manifestation of asset to the terms thereof made by the offeree in a manner invited or required by the offer. §50 Restatement (Second of Contracts). [iii] To constitute consideration, a performance or return promise must be bargained for. §71 Restatement (Second of Contracts). Here, the $500 payment constitutes the consideration. [iv] The statute of frauds requires certain contracts to be in writing.
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GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS NEWS
What’s next after retailers win major Supreme Court victory After 26 years and 37 states passing Main Street Fairness laws, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in June to allow states to require online, out-of-state sellers to collect sales tax the same as local stores. The retail victory in Wayfair v. South Dakota is a huge win for retailers. It puts all retailers on a level playing field and brings e-commerce into the 21st century.
AMY DRUMM MRA Vice President, Government Affairs Contact Amy at email@example.com
The Michigan Department of Treasury will begin enforcing sales tax collection.
THE CASE ITSELF AND SOUTH DAKOTA LAW In its decision, the Supreme Court upheld a South Dakota law that requires out-of-state sellers to collect South Dakota’s sales tax. The court said that the physical presence test (a requirement that a business collect taxes if it has a substantial physical presence in the state) is not necessary and a virtual or economic presence is enough. The court also found that previous court cases created, rather than resolved, market distortions. South Dakota’s law passed the Commerce Clause test by; • setting a sales threshold, • not going after retroactive taxes, • providing access to sales tax software paid for by the state, • providing immunity for sellers using the state’s provided sales tax, and • having adopted Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement (SSUTA) uniform rules. MICHIGAN’S NEXT STEPS By the time you read this, the Michigan Department of Treasury will have publicly announced its interpretation. They gave us a preview in late July that the state will begin enforcing sales tax collection from remote sellers who meet the same threshold as South Dakota’s law (more than $100,000 in annual sales in Michigan or more than With schools opening soon, it never hurts to remind employees who travel on the job about back-to-school roadway safety. Here’s a refresher on school buses:
News from Retailers Insurance 6
• It’s illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children, or to pass on the right. • Flashing yellow lights alert motorists that buses are preparing to stop. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign indicate that traffic moving in both directions of an undivided roadway must come to a stop and may not pass
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
200 annual transactions with Michigan consumers) on Oct. 1. Even better, the change will happen administratively and does not require us to pass a new law. This administrative change is possible because of steps MRA successfully advocated for in the past. Michigan, like South Dakota, is one of the 23 states that have adopted the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement (SSUTA). SSUTA standardizes taxes to reduce administrative and compliance costs. It requires a single, state-level tax administration, uniform definitions of products and services, simplified tax rate structures and other uniform rules. The legislature also passed a bill in 2014 that expanded what types of activities gave a business physical presence (“affiliate/ click-through nexus”). CONGRESSIONAL NEXT STEPS While Congress is not required to act, it will likely want to weigh in by outlining the terms under which states can collect taxes. Unlike Michigan, 38 of the 45 states with a sales tax also have county and local sales taxes. In fact, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on July 24 to hear a variety of viewpoints on the potential impact of the court’s decision. If Congress acts, they should and likely will address the following issues: simplifying tax rates and which items are taxable, limiting audit liability, addressing a standardized remittance schedule, requiring states provide free software to sellers, and determining where the sale occurs. Congress has also been sympathetic to smaller businesses asking for a certain dollar threshold exemption in the past and may bring that up in its discussions. the bus for any reason until the stop sign is retracted. • Remember that buses make frequent stops, so be patient. This is no time to tailgate or drive recklessly to get around a bus. In addition, keep an eye out for children near schools. Don’t roll over into the crosswalk at a red light and always obey the school crossing guard’s traffic directions. If you see a blinking flasher in a school zone, you MUST stop for pedestrians in crosswalks or intersections.
Streaming the development process How Michigan By KAREN WIEBER
communities can become redevelopment ready
Business owners are an important constituent and member of every Michigan community, as any local government official will likely tell you. A common thread among all business owners is the need to gain local approvals before renovating or opening a building or business. In some communities the process to do so is clear – the forms are available online, multiple payment options for fees are provided, a point person can answer any questions, and applications are reviewed in a timely manner. Communities can demonstrate their “development-readiness” by participating in the Redevelopment Ready Communities (RRC) program. RRC is an economic development tool at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation designed to help local governments create a more transparent and predictable approval process. RRC staff takes a deep dive into a local government’s practices and provides recommendations to remove barriers to small business development – things like streamlining approvals, reducing delays by documenting internal processes, and consistency in regulations. Clear and transparent permit processes are good for everyone – businesses, real estate developers and even homeowners looking to complete a small addition or install a fence. RRC best practices touch on many aspects of local government that are important to business owners, including: does the community have an adopted plan and vision? Are land use regulations clear? Are permit applications available online? How do I apply to serve on a board or commission? What property sites are the community’s highest priority, and are they marketed? What economic development goals has the community set for itself? And finally, what is the brand and marketing strategy for the community? Local governments from all over the state are participating in RRC – from the Upper Peninsula to southwest Michigan, and including the city of Detroit. To date, nearly 20 communities have accomplished the Best Practice criteria and become “RRC certified.” RRC certification is a signal that a community has their processes in order and is open for business. Michael Connors is the village manager for Almont, located in Lapeer County. Almont has been participating in RRC since mid-2017. “The No. 1 complaint among [real estate] developers is dealing with the delays of the local permitting and site plan review process,” Connors said. “For a developer, time is money. If you streamline the process and offer predictability and excellent customer service - this speaks volumes to a developer or resident looking for assistance.”
The certification award
The RRC-certified community of Middleville in Barry County has made strategic public investments in their downtown, like this community pavilion. Photos courtesy MEDC. Scott Adkins is the city manager for Roseville, located in Macomb County. Roseville earned RRC certification in 2014, and has continued to push for additional process improvements and redevelopment ever since. “Since becoming an RRC community, the time it takes to get approval for a big development project in Roseville like the Macomb Mall expansion has fallen from six months to 90 days or less. It’s been a huge improvement,” Adkins said. Roseville saw $40 million in commercial development last year that he attributes directly to the city’s RRC certification. Business owners and retailers can help the RRC process locally by getting involved; participating in community master plan input sessions, volunteering to serve on a board or commission, or simply by sharing positive marketing messages about the community. To learn more, visit https://www.miplace.org/ Karen Weiber is a Senior RRC Planner in community development at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
Avoid a data breach What’s your plan? We live in a world of intense data collection and the corresponding data mining (who hasn’t noticed that Facebook ads magically appear within seconds of you “googling” a unique phrase?). What are you doing to protect your customer’s data and, equally important, how have you planned for a data breach?
JOHN MAYLEBEN ETA CPP and MRA Consultant Contact John at firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s not a question of “if,” but “when” it will happen. Be prepared.
In the business environment today, it is not an “IF” but a “WHEN” you should be planning for. Even the best organizations can have a data breach. It might be something as simple as one of these minor events: • Confusing two customers with similar names and sharing data about one with the other; •Pushing the wrong speed dial button on your fax machine and faxing a document to the wrong person; • A phishing attack on your payroll person that allows someone to access your payroll records; • A spam email that looks legit to someone in accounting, who forwards all of the W-2s to a bad guy; or • A request for information about a specific employee that was sent by a bad guy. How you react to the breach can mean the difference between a mildly annoyed customer, vendor, or employee and a public lawsuit that creates bad PR for your organization and the specter of huge fines or penalties. While no one wants to have a data breach, you should be planning for the eventuality and then testing the plan periodically. CYBER INSURANCE One good place to start is with your insurance agent. If you haven’t already had a conversation about cyber insurance, you should. This is the policy that will typically come into play in the event of a data breach. These policies usually include some pre-planning tools and testing, along with the appropriate response plans. The good ones will offer tools to allow you to attempt to penetrate your computer systems and allow you to test your employees with spam and phishing emails.
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
The landscape of notification alone can be intimidating. In today’s smaller and smaller world of digital connectedness, you could have a computer server that is housed in one state, your business in Michigan and a customer in a third state. If you have a breach, who’s laws on notification apply? How quickly do you have to alert the person whose data was compromised? While this should be a federal issue (because of all of the cross-jurisdictional issues) the folks in Washington can’t seem to agree on the time of day, much less something as important as this. That has left the door open to each of the 50 states, and probably a few local governments, to craft their own rules and policies. With this patchwork quilt of laws, you could be violating one of them and not even recognize it. To quote the state trooper handing you a speeding ticket, “Ignorance of the law is not an acceptable defense.” Just because you weren’t aware of the law in the state of residence for the customer whose data was exposed doesn’t waive the penalties. Unfortunately, regardless of what goods or services you are selling, you need to be paying attention to the data you collect and where/how it is handled during its lifetime in your possession.
catch-all drawer The
DON’T FORGET TO VOTE IN MRA/RIC ELECTIONS! Elections for the Michigan Retailers Association and Retailers Insurance boards will occur at their annual meetings on Tuesday, Aug. 21. You should have received ballots in the mail in late July. If you didn’t receive a ballot, contact Amy Jolley at email@example.com. Deadline to return ballots for both elections is Friday, Aug. 17, but members can also vote in person at the meeting. • MRA Board of Directors The annual meeting for the MRA board will be at 11:45 on Aug. 21 in the MRA boardroom at 603 S. Washington in Lansing. Those listed as members as of close of business on July 23 are eligible to vote. Nominees for four seats on the MRA board are Bo Brines, Bill Golden, Joe McCurry and Peter Sobelton. All but Golden are incumbents. • RIC Board of Directors The annual meeting for the RIC board will be at noon on Aug. 21 in the MRA boardroom. Those who are policyholders of Retailers Insurance as of close of business on July 20 are eligible to vote. Nominees for the Retailers Insurance Co. board are James P. Hallan, William J. Hallan and Jean Sarasin, all incumbents.
Tidbits to make business easier
came in 11th for longevity, while restaurants came in 12th. The reason: Retail and especially restaurants have more volatile cash flow patterns. A cash buffer for lean months is crucial to small business success, according to a study by the JPMorgan Chase Institute, which the Free Press quoted. Longevity for the dozen industries is: • Real estate – 9 years • Health care services: 8.8 years • High-tech manufacturing: 6.9 years • Other professional services: 6.5 years • Metal and Machinery: 6.4 years • High-tech services: 6.2 years • Construction: 5.1 years • Personal services: 4.9 years • Wholesalers: 4.7 years • Repair & maintenance: 4.6 years • Retail: 4 years • Restaurants: 3.7 years
Larry Mullins is leaving the MRA board, and Orin Mazzoni’s term as chair is coming to an end, although he will continue to serve. A big thanks to both for their service! 6 TIPS ON EMAIL RANSOM SCAMMERS The Retail Doctor Bob Phibbs told readers he was recently the victim of an email ransom scammer. He received an email saying “I know your password” with his password in all caps. It was an old password but he got notifications from his grocery store, Google and others telling him to change his password. He refused to click on any of the links in those emails, rightfully thinking they were scam links. But he did go to his original accounts and change his passwords immediately. This has dangerous implications if you or an employee click on scam links. Phibbs suggests changing passwords regularly, use the https://haveibeenpwned.com/ website to determine if any of your accounts may have been compromised, and turn on two-factor authentication. And NEVER click a link in an email to go to a site to update your information. RETAIL LONGEVITY Retail stores’ average longevity is four years, according to a story in the Detroit Free Press. Out of 12 industries, retail WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
The man who canâ€™t quit retail
The multi-faceted Rick Melahn once owned a clothing and accessories store in Saugatuck. He then landed at MSU selling Big 10 brand merchandise. Now he manages the store for a non-profit science museum in Lansing.
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By MEEGAN HOLLAND
ick Melahn never expected to get into retail; he never expected to own his own store in Saugatuck.
Eventually Melahn not only bought out his friends but also a larger building, all while still flying the friendly skies at United Airlines.
He never expected to move into Big Ten logo merchandise and then end up at a not-for-profit retail store when by all rights he could comfortably retire.
Despite his second career, he’d be the first to admit that “The owner needs to be there. You need to know who your clientele is, what they are looking for and what can set you apart from the other retailers down the street.” Luckily, he had blocks of time off and an employee whom he trusted implicitly to run the place when he was flying.
But 40-plus years after his first job as a sales associate at Ambercrombie & Fitch, he’s excited about all the dinosaurs, science kits and games that teachers, parents and kids snatch up at the shop he runs inside the Impression 5 Science Center in Lansing. Why does he keep coming back? Because he can’t keep his hands – or eyes – off the merchandise. While some experts emphasize sales training or multi-channel outlets, Melahn’s strength is his eye for display.
THE CREATIVITY OF RETAIL Melahn loves the creativity of retail – especially the merchandising aspects. (See sidebar for his display tips).
“The No. 1 priority in retailing is your visual approach.”
STARTING OUT Melahn, fresh out of college with an education degree but no teaching job, started at Chicago’s Ambercrombie & Rick Melahn Fitch in the early 1970s. At that time the store carried high-end hunting and fishing clothing and accessories, crystal, jewelry and the luggage that Melahn sold. He took the luggage lined up on shelves and tilted it on angles, displayed it on tables and put the high-end bags behind the counter, giving it an air of exclusivity. That was his first taste of retail, before getting a teaching job teaching sixth graders for three years, before moving on to a more lucrative flight attendant job with United Airlines. It was the perfect profession to give him benefits and enough time off to help friends opening a casual men’s clothing store in 1980 in Saugatuck, which was starting to take off as a resort town. He quickly became immersed in the store, whose clientele was mostly from Chicago and Indiana, with plenty of disposable income. He kept the store open until 10 to accommodate tourists waiting for dinner reservations or better yet, catching them after dinner and a couple glasses of wine.
“To me, the No. 1 priority in retailing is merchandising - your visual approach,” Melahn said. “Our beautiful 100-year-ol building had a canoe hanging from the ceiling with a display in it. We bought furniture … very seldom did we use a rack.”
The image of a store outside and inside is key to its success, Melahn says. Too many stores have window displays that block the sidewalker’s view. “The number one factor for a customer is you want to peek inside! A lot of retailers are missing that nowadays.” He would change up the displays every several weeks, so returning customers could see merchandise in a new light. “Some customers would say to me, ‘Oh you got new merchandise!’” Melahn said. “No, I just displayed it differently.” He also paired items to help the customer pick out a complete ensemble, rather than having all pants here and all shirts over there. continued on page 12
He observed that women were the main shoppers – so why not add women’s clothing? When the preppy look started waning in the 80s and SUVs were carting owners to cabins (aka high-end second homes), it was time to change to new brands: The North Face and Columbia. And as long as tourists were buying clothing, why not offer up home goods that could accessorize those second homes? Photos: ABIGAIL L. SHERROD WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
The man who can’t quit retail continued from page 11
He admires Bradly’s Home and Garden in Old Town Lansing and Eastown Grand Rapids. “They have items hanging from the ceilings, groupings of furniture – it all draws your eye in.” ‘IT WAS MY HEART’ When his partner got a teaching position at Michigan State University, he sold the store and building in 2006, with no desire for a succession plan. “I put 26 years of my life into it. It was mine. It was my heart. I sold the building and said good-bye,” Melahn says. Life took him to the gift shop inside Michigan State University’s Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center. It was so tiny it couldn’t begin to maximize the sales on a football game day. He expanded across the hall and threw up tents on game days to sell more merchandise. He heard women complain about the limited clothing choices – they wanted feminine styles, not “their husband’s oversized sweatshirt.” He ordered more styles, went beyond the Spartan green color mode and added some bling (“Suzy Merchant loves the bling,” Melahn smiled). He left the university store so he could spend time with his grade school-aged grandkids. He started volunteering for one of their favorite destinations – Impression 5 Science Center – and soon enough he was rearranging the store, making inventory suggestions and increasing sales.
Executive Director Erik Larson took note, and hired Melahn to run the store with the goal of increasing profits. Sales have gone from $117,000 to $180,000 last year; Melahn wants to hit $225,000 this year, and eventually $250,000 in annual sales. He’s tailored the store to fit the Hot Wheels exhibit, and now he’s devised ways to create hype for this summer’s dinosaur exhibit. Now that Toys ‘R’ Us is gone, Melahn notes that the museum store is the only one in the area dedicated to toys. He wants people to think of shopping at the museum store for gifts. Last year, he brought in sales reps to demonstrate their toys to parents and supporters during an evening holiday party with wine and appetizers. It pulled in $4,500 in sales. Not-for-profit retailing is different, Melahn says. Prices are a little higher because the museum can’t buy in bulk like large retailers and they must take into account membership discounts on purchases. But Melahn emphasizes to customers that they’re supporting a wonderful institution. “Everyone who works here has a love for Impression 5, and that all starts at the top. Everything done here is for the pleasure of kids. And every item I sell goes back into the center, and that’s what I love about it. I have never felt more a part of retail than I do now,” Melahn says.
Rick’s tips on merchandising Get products that are right for your look and then figure out how to merchandise it.
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
Have the WOW factor – sometimes buy one thing that seems too expensive. People will think of your store differently from others.
Nothing should be straight across.
Think beyond the rack.
You want height to draw the customer’s eye to the entire display. If everything is uniform, you’ll lose them. When you look in somebody’s window, have a mannequin for height, and something on the floor next to it.
Put neatly folded clothes on a wonderful table. Line sweaters in baskets.
Scenes from Impression 5 Impression 5, a hands-on science museum, has the only dedicated toy store in Lansing. Merchandising matches the exhibits, including the current one, â€œAmazing Dinosaurs!â€? Get more information at https://impression5.org.
WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
19 students receive
Retailers scholarships MRA’s annual scholarship competition is awarding 19 scholarships totaling $30,000 for the 2018-19 academic year. The awards are funded by the Michigan Retailers Foundation and contributions from MRA members and other donors. There are 14 $1,500 scholarships and one $1,000 scholarship this year. The $1,500 scholarships go to students attending four-year colleges and universities and the $1,000 scholarship goes to a student attending a community college. In addition, four $2,000 scholarships came over when the Michigan Grocers Association joined MRA in early January. Those four scholarships are called the Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship awards, in honor of the former MGA chairman and director.
To be eligible, recipients must be an employee of a MRA member business or the dependent of an owner or employee of a member business. Students apply between January 1 and April 1 each year for the scholarships. The program’s totals have now reached $514,500 awarded to 530 recipients since 1999, when the current program format began.
Dakota Birr Oxford High School, Oxford Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship
Campbell Bortel H.H. Dow High School, Midland Mark Schrag Legacy Scholarship
Scholarship recipients were chosen by a third-party administrator - International Scholarship and Tuition Services.
• Meijer, Oxford • Michigan State University • Mechanical engineering • Freshman
• His father is David T. Bortel, MD, PC, in Midland, is an MRA member • Cedarville University • Geology • Senior
Michael Flickinger Home-Schooled Grand Rapids Walsh Family Legacy Scholarship • Meijer, Grand Rapids • Aquinas College • Biology • Sophomore
Paul Flickinger Home-Schooled Grand Rapids Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship • Meijer, Grand Rapids • Benedictine College • Finance • Senior
Mariah Claremont Portage James P. Hallan MRA President and CEO Legacy Scholarship
Jakob Disbrow Kalkaska High School, Kalkaska Jean L. Sarasin Legacy Scholarship
• Also a son of MRA member David T. Bortel, MD, PC, Midland • Alma College • Physiology • Sophomore
• Nelson Hardware, Portage • Kalamazoo Valley Community College • Respiratory therapy • Junior
• McLean’s Hardware, Kalkaska • University of Michigan • Engineering • Freshman
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
Information for each student is listed in this order: high school; award name; business where the student or parent works, business location; college or university; major; and class status.
Another new award is the Jean L. Sarasin Legacy Scholarship, named after and created by the former MRA executive vice president and chief operating officer. Sarasin retired from MRA in July 2014.
Quinton Bortel H.H. Dow High School, Midland Nathan Rosenfeld Legacy Scholarship
GUIDE TO PROFILES BELOW
Calvin Habba Waterford Kettering H.S., Waterford Raymond A. and Mildred C. Sobelton Platinum Legacy Scholarship • Pearle Vision, Waterford • Wayne State University • Optometry • Freshman
Alex Ieuter H.H. Dow High School, Midland Target Corporation Platinum Legacy Scholarship • Ieuter Insurance Group, Midland • Michigan State University • Business management • Freshman
Alicia Kasper Cedarville High School, Hessel Joseph Swanson Platinum Legacy Scholarship • Richard B. Morrison, D.D.S. P.C., Pickford • Ferris State University • Pharmacy • Sophomore
Aaron Kofsky Pioneer High School, Ann Arbor Kenneth A. and Margaret Schwark Legacy Scholarship • Bank of Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor • University of Michigan • Computer programming • Freshman
Eden Langlois Marquette High School, Marquette Thomas Ungrodt Legacy Scholarship • Blackrocks Brewery, Marquette • Northern Michigan Univ. • Education • Freshman
Isabella Licavoli Eisenhower High School, Macomb Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship • Kroger, Shelby Charter Township • University of Michigan • Biology • Sophomore
Ricky Matthews Ottawa Hills High School, Grand Rapids Helen McCurry Legacy Scholarship • Meijer, Grand Rapids • Western Michigan University • Physical therapy • Sophomore
Brooke Mehney St. Johns High School, DeWitt Linda Mayleben Legacy Scholarship • Michigan Police Equip. Co., Charlotte • Ferris State University • Architecture • Freshman
Ishaan Sabnis Salem High School, Canton Fred and Lillian Sherman Legacy Scholarship • Broaching Machine Specialties, Novi • University of Michigan • Computer science • Sophomore
Madison Skop Boyne City High School, Boyne Falls Barb Stein Legacy Scholarship • Country Casuals, Petoskey • Central Michigan Univ. • Graphic design • Junior
Abigail Sykes Reeths-Puffer High School, Twin Lake Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship • Meijer, Grand Rapids • Alma College • Political science • Sophomore
Megan Taylor Skyline High School, Ann Arbor D. Larry Sherman Legacy Scholarship • Fourth Avenue Birkenstock, Ann Arbor • University of Michigan • Cognitive science • Freshman
Stay tuned… The competition for 20192020 scholarships will kick off Jan. 1. Materials will be mailed to member businesses and high schools in the first week following New Year’s Day. You can also follow our MRA Facebook page to stay up to date on all scholarship announcements.
WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
Scholarships are a family affair Michigan Retailers occasionally has had more than one family member win a scholarship award. And itâ€™s no different this year, as one family stands out in the number of scholarship participants. Michael Flickinger and his brother Paul won the Walsh Family Legacy Scholarship and the Paul M. Felice Memorial Scholarship respectively.
Scholarship and the Nathan Rosenfeld Legacy Scholarship respectively. Quinton also won a scholarship in 2017. David T. Bortel, MD, PC has been a member of MRA since 2002.
Awardees are chosen by a thirdparty administrator - International Scholarship and Tuition Services. Congratulations to the Flickinger and Bortel families!
This is the seventh overall win for the Flickinger family. Michael, Paul and their sister, Sarah, have taken home awards since 2015: Sarah and Paul in 2015, Sarah in 2016 and Paul and Michael in 2017 and 2018. Their father, David, works at Meijer in Grand Rapids, a member of MRA, making the three eligible. Theyâ€™ve been granted a total of $9,500 in tuition from their winnings. Midland is also home to a sibling duo taking home awards this year. Campbell and Quinton Bortel, sons of Dr. David T. Bortel, won the Mark Schrag Legacy
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
From l-r: Dad David Flickinger with his children, Paul, Sarah and Michael.
Upcoming events Frequently asked questions for the Food Retailers Summit on Sept. 23-25
Jewelers’ Summit features sales trainer Shane Decker on Sept. 30 Jewelry store owners, take note: For the price of dinner and a movie, you can get access to a day-long seminar with nationally known sales expert Shane Decker, who will discuss how to increase your sales, stay motivated and take advantage of industry trends.
You’ll connect with grocers and vendors, hear from Food Marketing Institute CEO Leslie Sarasin and motivational speaker Michael Broome. The Al Kessel retailer and partner awardees will be recognized. And don’t forget the competitions in corn hole, bocce and euchre! Leslie Sarasin
We’ve reduced the price to honor the conference’s 120th year, and spouses are included. You can register at bit.ly/MGAsummit18. Here’s an FAQ: What is the Buy Nearby Welcome Bag? Looking for a way to introduce new products or reintroduce existing products? This is our take on a condensed, higher-value experience than the trade show. Instead of paying higher fees and lugging trade show materials to the Summit, submit your non-perishable product to be included in our new Buy Nearby Welcome Bag that Summit guests will pick up at our registration desk on Sunday.
Decker has provided much sought-after sales training for more than 3,000 stores worldwide, and is a featured contributor to Instore, a major industry publication that targets the American jewelry store owner. He started in jewelry sales in Garden City, Kansas, and sold more than 100 one-carat diamonds four years in a row. Organizers are Orin Mazzoni, Jr. and Becky Beauchine Kulka (Michigan Retailers Association board officers), Susan Barnett of the American Gem Society (AGS) and Michelle Corcoran of the GIA Alumni Michigan Chapter.
What should I expect at the Grocer-Supplier CONNECT Luncheon? This year, leave the trade-show set up at home and come ready to talk one-on-one at Monday’s Grocer-Supplier CONNECT Luncheon. At this new event, we’ll do the matchmaking and you’ll reap the benefits. Grocers and participating suppliers will be randomly assigned to tables where they will enjoy a relaxed/ casual lunch and have time to get to know one another and how their businesses can work together. It’s a great way to have a captive audience!
Thanks to The Edge - Software for Jewelers and The Edge Retail Academy, the cost of the seminar is affordable enough that we’re encouraging store owners to bring as many staff members as possible.
How do I participate in the bocce, cornhole and euchre tournaments? Sign-up sheets will be at the Summit Registration Desk for the new euchre tournament (held Sunday during the Bruce & Buster’s hospitality event), and bocce and cornhole tournaments (held on Monday afternoon).
Here are the details: The Jewelers’ Summit Sunday, Sept. 30 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Registration at 9:30 a.m.; lunch included) Detroit Marriott Livonia, 17100 Laurel Park Drive North, Livonia MI 48152 Registration: bit.ly/2018jewelry
What format is the golf outing and how do I sign up? Pre-registration is required for the golf outing on Tuesday, Sept. 25 at the resort’s Mountain Ridge course. There will be a shotgun start at 11:00 a.m., lunch is included. No after-golf program is planned, but winners’ prizes will be awarded at an informal 19th Hole. Can I make room reservations online? Yes. Book online at http://bit.ly/foodsummit18 or call 855.520.2974 and ask for the Michigan Grocers block, using Group Code 4642OM. For more FAQs, go to http://bit.ly/MGAsummit18
Admission is $35 for members of MRA, AGS or GIAA-Michigan; $50 for non-members and $25 for any additional salespeople from your store that you would like to bring along. This is an excellent educational opportunity for beginners and experienced salespeople alike.
Decker knows what kills sales and what makes them. He has the insights to arm salespeople with ways to talk to customers about jewelry. He reminds salespeople that diamonds, for example, are desired for their emotional voltage, and should not be thought of as commodities. We encourage you take advantage of this priceless training tool and this rare chance to network with your colleagues. Contact MRA’s Meegan Holland at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800.366.3699 x 340 with any questions or go to bit.ly/2018jewelry. WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
In his own words
The M Den
Opened: 1976 Corporate Location: 315 S. Main St., Ann Arbor Specialties: University of Michigan clothing, gifts MRA member since: 1983 MRA services: All services Owners: Scott Hirth, Julie Corrin, Steve Horning
By RACHEL SCHRAUBEN
Does your business have a unique story? Contact email@example.com.
INTRODUCTION When two Ann Arbor teachers opened a sporting goods store in 1976 without any business experience, they never imagined it would turn into University of Michigan fans’ first stop for gameday attire. Dave Hirth and Doug Horning, both high school football coaches, eventually realized customers’ desire for U-M clothing. Soon they opened more locations, and the store located at 315 S. Main St., became the original M Den. The store still exists today as the M Den corporate address. Fourteen years later, Hirth and Horning sold the business to the second generation of owners: Dave Hirth’s children, Scott Hirth and Julie Corrin, and Doug Horning’s nephew, Steve Horning. The M Den has seven locations, from Ann Arbor to Novi and Livonia. Here are owner Scott Hirth’s observations. Above, The M Den in Ann Arbor. Left, co-owner Scott Hirth. Right, a look inside The M Den, whch has risen to become the go-to place for University of Michigan clothing, accessories and more. Photos: ABIGAIL L. SHERROD
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
IN HIS OWN WORDS Our busiest time... The busy season starts in July as we get product in for back-toschool, which for us is just an extension of the football season. Back-to-school happens in August and then you roll right into football season, which is absolutely the busiest time of the year. After the last football game, we roll into Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday and into the holidays. Non-busy means it’s relatively not as busy as the fall. We still see success. We’ve been very successful in basketball and hockey. Our typical customer is... A Michigan fan. That fan can be on their first visit to Ann Arbor trying to decide if they want to go to the University of Michigan, so they’re not even a student yet, all the way up to that alum who graduated a long time ago and doesn’t even live in Michigan. Eighty percent of our internet sales happen outside the state of Michigan and are shipped out of Michigan. We have a gigantic alumni base that comes to The M Den. You can’t do what we do without the great university being at the forefront of that. Our best year for sales was... Actually a very recent year and that was the launch of Nike – when Michigan went from an Adidas school to a Nike school in 2016. We had a year that won’t be matched until Michigan wins a National Championship in football. The customers had been clamoring for the university to be a Nike school again and Michigan was able to make that happen and the customers were fired up. We were also really good in football that year and that helped. Explain the ProudBox subscriptions: ProudBox is a relatively new innovation. It’s a subscription box service with University of Michigan clothing and gifts. Essentially, if a Michigan fan wants to sign up to give a gift to someone, or if they want to buy a box for themselves, they get a box each month. The customer just has to choose their size and whether they are a man, woman or child and we take care of the rest. The Victor’s collection, with brands like Tommy Bahama: It arose because we acquired a piece of property that was right next to our flagship store on State Street in Ann Arbor. There was a different landlord than our main building and that landlord wouldn’t let us put a hole in the wall to simply expand our store and because of that we had to figure out what to do with that space. What we came up with was putting in the finest things we can find. Clothing with big name brands that we could actually get a Michigan license for and make their things. It turns out the customers loved it. The business casual and golf attire is certainly more expensive, it is certainly for a different kind of customer. The hardest part about managing this business model... is that even with the growth we’ve seen, the business is still very dependent on success on the football field and making sure we win our fair share of football games. That is the biggest unknown each year. We have no control over that. Some of the biggest failures... Would probably be going from one store to several. We may have gone from one store to three, back to two, up to three, four, five, back to four, so there have been some experiments with stores across Southern Michigan that may not have worked out. We’ve acknowledged those failures and moved on from it. WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
Super Raffle expected to generate strong sales A frequent question from players is: “When will the Lottery have another raffle?” Since 2006, the Lottery has offered 25 different raffle games. These games have featured different designs and top prize amounts ranging from $40,000 tax free to nearly $2.5 million.
BRIAN O’NEILL Lottery Commissioner
$50 tickets for the Super Raffle went on sale Aug. 12
To meet the demand from players, the Lottery again will offer a raffle game. The Super Raffle will feature the richest payouts of any raffle game offered by the Lottery. It will feature a top prize of $4 million and two $2 million prizes. We expect player excitement for this raffle to reach unprecedented levels and help boost store traffic and sales for retailers. Tickets for the Super Raffle are on sale Aug. 12. Each Super Raffle ticket costs $50, giving retailers a $3 sales commission on every ticket sold. Each Easy Pick play will feature a unique seven-digit raffle number, making sales quick and easy for retail staff, since players won’t have to use play slips. In addition to a $4 million top prize and two $2 million prizes, other prizes are: $100,000 (10), $500 (3,300), and $100 (12,000). The Super Raffle drawing will take place on or after Sept. 19. With the unique raffle structure and multi-million prizes available, we expect interest in this game to be strong for avid and casual Lottery players and to boost sales for retailers.. NEW INSTANT TICKETS: On sale Aug. 7: IG 262 - Poker Multiplier - $5 IG 265 - $2,000,000 Jackpot - $20
MRA’s Private Insurance Exchange
INSTANT GAMES SET TO EXPIRE: Aug. 6: IG 741 - Hot Spicy Cash - $2 IG 770 - Cashword - $2 Sept. 10: IG 778 - Collecting Cash - $1 NEW PULL TABS TICKETS: On sale Aug. 7: MI 510 - Cash Flow - $.50 MI 518 - Third and Won - $1 MI 527 - $2,000,000 Cash Roll - $5 PULL TABS GAMES SET TO EXPIRE: Aug. 28: MI 578 - Mega Bucks Multiplier - $1 IT 870 - Brewin Bucks - $1 TICKET ACTIVATION: Retailers are reminded to activate all game tickets before putting them on sale to ensure winning tickets may be redeemed by players. About 97 cents of every dollar spent on Lottery tickets is returned to the state in the form of contributions to the state School Aid Fund, prizes to players and commissions to vendors and retailers. In the 2017 fiscal year, the Lottery’s contribution to Michigan’s public schools was a record $924.1 million. For additional information, follow the Michigan Lottery on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and online at www.michiganlottery.com.
Let us show you how the MRA private exchange takes the hassle out of group health insurance. Get a quote at bit.ly/MRAexchange Questions? Call 800.366.3699 ext. 681 Fewer than two or more than 50 full-time employees, please call the above number.
MICHIGAN RETAILER AUG/SEP 2018
Thunder Bay Winery LLC, Alpena The Hebrew Day School of Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor KCBJ Inc. dba Moore’s Painting & Decorating, Au Gres Massie’s Country Market, Bark River Calhoun Holdings LLC dba Papa’s Italian Sausage, Battle Creek FMS Inc., Bay City Detroit Skating Club Inc., Bloomfield Hills Bravo Logistics LLC, Clinton Township Sto-N-Go Storage, Coldwater Baugh Operating Inc., Conklin Rafferty & Barron PC, Farmington Hills Graceland Fruit, Frankfort Grow the Bench LLC, Grand Rapids Wood-Cutters Tooling, Grandville Upper Lakes Tire Distributors of Grayling Inc., Grayling Harbor Springs IGA Inc., Harbor Springs The Party Doc LLC, Harrison Players Market, Hazel Park Holland Bicycle Compost, Holland West Ottawa Sprinkling Company, Holland Lolo’s Bar & Grill LLC, Holland Otter River Outfitters, Houghton Sherri’s Restaurant, Ishpeming Feenstra and Associates Inc., Jenison JVW Dental PC, Kalamazoo Mr. Pro Auto & 4X4 Repair, Kalamazoo Blue 302 Inc., Kalamazoo
Victoria Elkins dba Blue 302 Victoria, Kalamazoo Sheri Woodward dba Blue 302 Sheri, Kalamazoo Patricia McNulty dba Blue 302 Patricia, Kalamazoo Delta Embroidery Inc., Lansing Tire It Wholesale LLC, Ludington Hit the Mark Charters LLC, Ludington JI Painting Co LLC, Macomb Llenga Painting LLC, Macomb National Painting LLC, Macomb Marquette Mountain, Marquette G & P Lajcaj dba Oakwood Country Cafe, Melvindale Athena Salon LLC, Midland Judy Joseph, Midland Athena Salon dba Melanie Armour, Midland Athena Salon dba Heather Edwards, Midland Athena Salon dba Michelle Marcotte, Midland Athena Salon dba Carolyn Pawlak, Midland Serendipity Road, Midland Top Dog Car Audio, Mount Pleasant Kayla K LLC, Muskegon Multani Mart Inc., Muskegon G & W Refrigeration, Muskegon Lakeshore Community Group LLC, Muskegon Heights Cory’s Restaurant Inc., Newaygo Joey Armadillos Inc., Niles Paradise Shores Cabins, Paradise Page Partytime Tents & Rentals LLC, Port Huron
Electronic transactions Credit cards, gift cards, check processing, e-commerce – we offer it all!
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Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800.366.3699
WWW.RETAILERS.COM AUG/SEP 2018
603 South Washington Avenue Lansing, MI 48933 Phone: 517.372.5656 Toll-free: 800.366.3699
Weâ€™ve got plans to cover all of yours. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network offers the complete insurance solution to protect the overall health and well-being of your employees. For more information, contact the Michigan Retailers Association at 517-372-5656 GROUP HEALTH PLANS | SPECIALTY BENEFITS | BCBSM.COM/EMPLOYERS
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The August-September 2018 issue of Michigan Retailer, the official publication of Michigan Retailers Association.