A Message to GearME's Customers and Consignors
(with FAQ below)
This is not an easy message to write, but it's time to get the word out that I am exploring my options for selling or closing GearME in the coming months. I have loved every minute of my work, and I'm thrilled with the relationships I've made, but owning a business is a lot. My family has supported me with their whole hearts, but I can't deny they've had to make sacrifices for me to pursue this adventure. GearME has been open for over 5 years now, and that feels like a significant milestone. I've accomplished something that far exceeded my expectations, and now I'm looking forward to being more present for my family. The specific timeline is very much TBD, but a close or sale would still be at least a couple months away.
I intend to close or transfer the business in an orderly fashion with clear communication to consignors. If you know anyone looking for a rewarding new life adventure, please let them know about the opportunity to purchase GearME. Our real estate broker info is listed below. I'm happy to discuss my experiences running the store, but all sale-related questions should go through him.
This page will be updated regularly with important information for consignors and customers. Please see below for FAQ.
I am so, so sorry to let this adventure go. Having no idea what's next for me is a little daunting, but I'm comforted knowing I can look forward to the next couple months doing what I love at GearME. Thank you for all your enthusiasm and support. You built this store to what it is, and I'm forever grateful.
So, what's the plan?
I see three likely scenarios:
We find a buyer and go through a gradual transition to new management. There would likely be some logistics around closing out current consignment accounts and signing new agreements.
We don't find a buyer by our preferred timeline of transitioning by late February. In that case we would make arrangements with every consignor to close out accounts, make payouts, and return items.
I find employment that I can't pass up and I need to close the store sooner than February. As above, we'll have an orderly process for closing out accounts and returning items.
I am a consignor. Do I need to pick up my remaining items or my payout now?
No, at the moment you don't need to do anything different as a result of this announcement. We will carry on business as usual until we have a reason to make changes. Whatever expiration date you were given remains in place for now. If you decide to pick up your items or payout now, please book a time in advance. We will communicate more info when it's time to have a formal plan in place for final payouts and item pick-up.
Are you still accepting consignment?
Consignment intake will stop on 11/15/23, although that's unrelated to this announcement. We have an enormous amount of inventory right now and we want to get this great stuff sold. We still have hundreds of items waiting to get checked in over the next few weeks. Plenty to keep the store full through the winter.
We will not be taking any spring/summer consignment as we move into the new year. If we are holding summer items in storage for you, please contact us by email to arrange pick-up or donation.
What will happen to my Consignor Credit, Store Credit, and/or Rewards Credit?
That depends on whether we end up selling or closing the store. If we close the store it's pretty straight-forward (see bullets below). If we sell, it will largely depend on what obligations the new owner wants to take on.
Let's make sure we are all using the same terminology. Consignor accounts have three varieties of money that can accrue. Customer accounts that do not have consigned items have two varieties of money that can accrue.
Consignor Credit: All consignors accrue proceeds from the sale of items as Consignor Credit. Some consignors choose to take this credit as a check and other choose to take it for in-store use only. We casually refer to the in-store use money as "store credit", but it is technically categorized as Consignor Credit.
If, when you filled out your consignment agreement, you selected "Store Credit" as your profit share, you are still accruing Consignor Credit, which has cash value. "Store Credit" profit share is generally 60% return to you. You may elect to have this money paid out to you instead, but the payout will be recalculated to a standard cash rate of 45% profit share. Both types of Consignor Credit can still be used in the store until we close or transition to a new owner.
Just like always, you may request your payout any time. Please book a pick-up time. When it's time to communicate a closing or transition plan we will explain the process for receiving your final consignor payout.
Rewards Credit: Customers and consignors can accrue rewards money based on purchases made in the store. Rewards Credit is not the same as cash and cannot be paid out as cash. A new owner might not want to carry this forward, so you should plan to try to use this before we close or transition.
Store Credit: Customers and consignors can accrue store credit, generally from store promotions and returns. Gift cards are also considered Store Credit. Store Credit is not the same as cash and cannot be paid out as cash. A new owner might not want to carry this forward, so you should plan to try to use this before we close or transition.
Will my remaining items be deeply discounted?
No, not at the moment. Items will remain priced as planned. They will still get discounted as they age through their consignment period as usual, and we may have normal sales from time to time, but we have no reason to have clearance sales at this point. We will communicate future changes if needed.
What if I have more questions?
Please email your questions rather than call. If we need to set up a time to speak on the phone, that's fine. Understand that I may not be able to provide specific answers until I figure out what's next for the business. At that point I'll update this site and send emails with many more details.
Who can I contact to ask questions about the sale of the business?