Kailua boutique Global Village to close storefront, move online – Pacific Business News – Pacific Business News (Honolulu)

Hawaii boutique Global Village will transition into an online-only business, after the owners have opted to not renew the lease on their storefront at the Alexander & Baldwin-owned Kailua Village Shops.
The lease will expire on Feb. 28, but an exact closing date has not yet been set.
In a statement, the owners cited financial concerns and changing consumer behavior as the reasons behind the shift in their business model.
“The thought of giving up the brick-and-mortar space that has housed the store for the past 22 years was not our first choice, or an easy decision,” said co-owner Dawn Ravelo in a statement.
“The new shopping habits of consumers, and increased technology available at lower costs for small businesses has given us the confidence to be an online-only store,” Ravelo added.
As Debbie Ah Chick-Hopkins, Ravelo’s sister and co-owner of Global Village, said in an October interview with PBN, online sales have not traditionally been a focal point for the brand. They’ve prioritized face-to-face relationship building with regular customers instead, she noted.
“We are starting from the beginning. We redesigned our website in November and will be combining an e-commerce model with a drop shipping model. We have some partnerships in place and look forward to dedicating 100% of our time developing this,” she told PBN this week.
The company said it is continuing to build the website and add new inventory to its online store.
The sisters founded the brand in 1995 alongside their mother and have been in their current location since 1999. Over the years, Global Village has paid about $2 million in wages to approximately 125 employees, and was a first job for about 60% of its workers.
The shop currently has five part-time employees — all of whom are high school and college students.
“They have been amazingly supportive and as we navigate through this new endeavor, we are being mindful of their situations and how we can fit them into our new business model, and if not, how we can support them and assist them with new opportunities,” Ah Chick-Hopkins said of their staff.
When asked if Global Village plans to look for another physical location in the future, Ah Chick-Hopkins said that “the overhead costs associated with being in a brick-and-mortar is something we are not looking to jump back into.”
But there are aspects of the brick-and-mortar model that they will miss.
“After 26 years in Kailua, and 22 years at our current location, we are feeling sad, sentimental, happy, excited, relieved, [and] grateful. We are ending old partnerships and beginning new ones. We are going to miss our face-to-face contact with our loyal customers,” Ah Chick-Hopkins said.
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