Reno Fine Clothing may have only moved to their Front St. location last year, but it seems like it has been tailored for Downtown Sarnia all along. The business first opened in 1983 and then was purchased by the current owner, Bruce Marks, in 2011. Since then, it has grown by fifteen percent and is still thriving.
Reno Fine Clothing is a just-for-men’s clothing store, where fifty percent of its clothing is more casualwear and the other fifty percent more formal. In terms of the different brands found in his store, Marks remains select with manufacturers; he prefers to sell brands that are made in Canada, but are still at a fair price. Versatility is also a top priority for his store. “I focus on selling clothes that a guy can get the most out of. It’s good to buy a shirt that works for jeans as well as for dress pants.” In addition to selling clothes, Marks provides tailoring services, whether you have purchased the clothes from the store or not. However, he will give a generous discount for tailoring in-store purchases.
After having the store at the Northgate Plaza for several years, relocating to Front St. was a big step for Marks and it has definitely paid off. Marks adds, “It worked out really well. Customers [from the old location] remained loyal and then I also got new ones.”
Marks had many positive things to say about the SLBDC, particularly about how much they have helped with financial planning. “I was able to go through the entire financial process with SLBDC. They are good at helping people reach their five-year goals.”
Looking back at his experience as an entrepreneur, Marks wished he was aware of all of the challenges that came with the job before starting the business. “It’s not just a challenge once a year. You have challenges every day and a lot of it is behind-the-scenes.” You can have a really good plan, but that does not mean you will automatically succeed. You cannot know how things are going to progress. That is why his advice to new entrepreneurs would be to “look at the tools at your disposal, think outside the box and don’t stand still. Keep moving.”
When I asked about his favourite part of being an entrepreneur, Marks was able to give me an answer without any hesitation. “The people. They will make your day.” He mentioned how just the other week a boy came in to find something nice to wear for his grade eight graduation. “This was a big deal – his mom and sisters were with him, helping him pick out his first, really nice outfit. It’s great to be a part of those kinds of experiences.”
Reno Fine Clothing is located at 150 Front St. and you can contact Bruce Marks at (519) 344-7471 for any inquiries. Store updates and any other information can be found on its Facebook page, Reno Fine Clothing, or on its website, www.renofineclothing.com.