The Sexy Side of The Business: Retail Math


Bret Schnitker, Emily Lane


June 11, 2024


Bret Schnitker  00:02

Small Business and niche, they can actually go to their customer and say, Look, we're launching a new style. We're telling a story, we're letting people know about it. And we're going to offer presale. And there's two levels of presale there's that Buy Now get nine months later. And there is a buy now get four weeks later. And then what that's doing is front loading the demand of a particular sale, allowing by three or four weeks before the goods are in there probably manufactured in route, but they can gauge early the demand on those sales, they can book those, those numbers into their revenue stream. And they can immediately proactively plan additional deliveries to be delivering to fill in for the voids that they know they're going to have well before they receive their first shipment.

Emily Lane  01:01

Welcome to Clothing Coulture, a fashion industry podcast at the intersection of technology and innovation. I'm Emily Lane.

Bret Schnitker  01:09

And I'm Bret Schnitker. We speak with experts and disruptors who are moving the industry forward and discuss solutions to real industry challenges.

Emily Lane  01:17

Clothing Coulture is produced by Stars Design Group, a global design and production house with more than 30 years of experience.

Emily Lane  01:28

Welcome back to another episode of Clothing Coulture today. It's just the two of us Bret. And oh, my Do I have a juicy topic for ice? Are you ready? Well, we are going to be talking about Math!

Bret Schnitker  01:46

same thing my third grade teacher get into a met with complete silence.

Emily Lane  01:53

Don't stop this episode just yet. I promise it's going to be worth it. I know that our industry.

Bret Schnitker  02:00

And if it isn't, you'll get a few z's, you can take a little nap. Take a break during the day/

Emily Lane  02:07

In all seriousness, it's a really important part of our business, we understand, you know, the sexy part of our business is one of trends and fabrics and what comes down that runway. But what really makes a business successful is that bottom line, the numbers, and there are a lot of kind of standard formulas and rules to kind of follow when building a successful business.

Bret Schnitker  02:34

There is there's you know, and that's kind of an evolving space. But there's always what we call kind of retail one on one numbers that, that companies that are newer, or startups, things like that should really make sure that they understand I remember years ago when I started, you know, past working in retail and moving up to the main office, my first job and responsibility was kind of managing distribution and numbers and for a creative. I mean, it was like rope burn, right? It was tough. And I remember at the time, I was like, Okay, you say pay your dues, this is paying holy smoke, it was there was a lot more manual, there were almost three or 400 stores and understanding these metrics and making sure that the units were in these areas at the right time and analyzing the success of a particular style, or color or size, etc. which we always had Monday meetings to do. And we were required to kind of pull that information. I was just like, you know, I'm not in Kansas anymore. This is tough. This is not what I had planned. Yeah,

Emily Lane  03:42

and you know, we actually have kind of this conversation quite a bit. So we thought, well, let's just capture this one and hopefully be some good information for a lot of those that are really trying to consider how to turn their apparel company into a really profitable venture. So I kind of want to start with some some fundamentals and go up from there. Let's just start it, you know, what are some of those basic rules of thumb when it comes to retail wholesale costs? Sure.

Bret Schnitker  04:11

So you know, all brands kind of start in the visionary finding the niche, creating a dream driving that business. And then at some point, it comes honestly down to an important understanding and grasp of how those numbers relate to decisions that you make in your business on a daily basis. And I remember the first thing I was ever told as a buyer was that you will never buy the right amount right and I always I remember that initial conversation right, you either under buyer you over buy and I remember that initial conversation how off putting that was because he thought that there was enough science to be able to always determine that. And over the years I've realized that it's it's it's really true. challenging to get, you know, get that needle close that with with more information and, and particular products you can you can hone in and be a lot more effective on those decisions. But the one thing that that people should always understand that whenever they're going out to do a product launch or they're there in the first number of years in their business, is that you know, you're never going to over by or under buy in some of the cues behind that are, if you're if you know that you're either going to over buy or under buy. The next set of cues are is that most businesses typically will do between 40 and 60% of their business and basics. And what I refer to in basics is things that are usually transeasonal, don't have a cadence for an immediate markdown aren't too trendy, they kind of stay in year, and you're out. And, you know, I resemble that remark with my black T shirts, right, you know, every day. And so those kind of core basics done correctly, can make a huge difference in your business and behind

Emily Lane  06:00

and build real loyalty and repeat business.

Bret Schnitker  06:04

Absolutely. And then as you end those particular items, if you're going to over buy those, the ones to overbuy

Emily Lane  06:12

Longer weeks of supply, right,

Bret Schnitker  06:14

if you're if your trend is a little slow at a particular year, it takes a little more time to build and ramp up that volume. Those units aren't at huge risk to mark down. And the last thing you want to do a lot of people I remember, even last year and a few years before that, visiting some of these new startups. And the first thing that they would say is Oh my god, we're blowing out of items, we're just selling through them and look how successful we are. And I'd analyze their online site. And I'd kind of go in and click on styles and extra large or whatever my size was, and it was kind of like sold out. And then I go to the next one sold out. Next one sold out. It was just like,

Emily Lane  06:51

yeah, how many times do you get before consumer,

Bret Schnitker  06:53

Before your customer bounces and doesn't come back. And so in some places selling out too rapidly or not having some consistent product all the time, you're leaving a ton of money on the table, you're setting the client you with properly done core basics that are always in stock. Customers are their loyal time and time out, they buy one color, they love that they want to buy multiple more colors to fit in their wardrobe or after time washes, where you know, one of those garments may not be as fresh as you would think or they were out and you're gonna buy another one. So making sure that you're in stock and those products Hence, if you will the term slightly over buy till you can analyze your business and understand how quickly it takes to get back into those goods. Point. And then as you move up the ladder to what we called Fashion basics or fashion pieces. Fashion basics can be resembled core moderate, moderately a little bit, but they're generally seasonal, something that might be related to a particular summer winter campaign, fabrication or some type of a look. And then fashion are these items that you know, you see from a distance and compels you to go take a look at the item and then you realize, man, maybe at 62 I can't wear a leopard shirt, and I'm gonna go buy a black T shirt, right? You're gonna go buy the core, those items, if you're going to an overbite or underbite those typically, you want to have a situation where you under buy to the expected demand a little bit because then in the result is saying demand twice, you increase demand, people are like, Oh, my God, I missed the boat. I should buy more of those or I should be on the bandwagon quicker next time. And so having an understanding of those basic matrixes at the outset for your entire assortments really important.

Emily Lane  08:40

Yeah, I I completely understand. So you're really looking at kind of like a 60% of your business being core.

Bret Schnitker  08:48

usually 40 to 60% to a normal business.

Emily Lane  08:51

So I want to take a step back a little bit and just talk about, you know, a lot of times when we're building an initial line with our collection, you know, we really set to work through assortment plans, which we'll talk about, but you know, we start with kind of this, like, what, what is the price that we think the consumer is going to be willing to pay for the garment and then you kind of back down from there. Let's talk a little bit about those fundamental formulas for a retail price versus what you would consider a wholesale price versus then how you know, like, what's the what's the ratio for cost up to retail?

Bret Schnitker  09:32

Yeah sure. Some of those numbers are a little fungible brand by brand, but overall in the industry, especially with a lot of transparency that's going on today and transparency and pricing and other things like that people like Quince's etc are being a lot. But the number really hasn't changed much in a number of years and the MSRP (Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price) is usually at a 75 percent markup from your cost. So when the customer buys it at $5, then your retails going to be somewhere in the 20, 25 dollar range ish. You know, because the fungible nature, and people like, wow, that's a pretty healthy markup. But when you realize all the things that go into running a successful business, there's such a thing called overhead that people don't really think about. And, you know, you're paying people, you've got marketing, marketing, and shipments and podcast to record, and not every garment sells through. And there's just a lot of things that go into that. So a lot of that number gets used up and, you know, net profits are never in that position. You know, technology gets the luxury of, you know, very, very high profits and very high maintain profits. But the retail industry doesn't really live that that same degree. So setting that position, I always tell brands that we work with the ideal goal is to set your MSRPs at about 75% of cost, so that you manage overhead, that if you have some, you know, we always talk about this another podcast, too, about good and bad on the wall, you know, things that you think you're going to do well, that don't always have a certain amount of markdowns, that you're covering all those things. And you were made a healthy, viable business for your employees and customers that buy into your brand. And they really like it, you're going to be around for a while, right? When it comes to wholesale pricing. It's sort of a sub factor subset of that where it's broken down into two components. And again, those numbers are a little fungible. But typically a wholesale relationship with a retailer on a brand, they'll get about 50%, or what we call a keystone markup, which means if you wholesale it at 10, the retailer will put it out at $20, they get kind of a an entire one time markup, you know, double the cost. And then from that point of wholesale the brand itself, depending on the viability, the brand, the amount of expense they have in marketing and advertising, etc. They'll run between 30 and 50%. As an internal markup, the Combine between the two markups, the 5050, kind of equal amount of 75% direct to consumer and today we live in a world of multichannel, right. So there's always these blended margins, if you're selling wholesale on one side, and you're selling direct to consumer on the other pros and cons to all of that. But you know, the brand can maintain a slightly higher markup than they used to, when you traditionally just always had sales to brick and mortar.

Bret Schnitker  10:33

Alot of times we get the question of how much is this going to cost? I want to go to market how much it's gonna cost. And one of the things that we walk a lot of our clients through is the assortment plan, let's talk about the value of that, with regards to budgeting and, and and the planning phase.

Bret Schnitker  12:52

Yeah, there's two components of marketing. The overall reaching plan that a lot of retailers use is called an open to buy plan. That's usually based on history based on budgets based upon the growth or, or lack of growth in a particular category. And that will be usually mandated by the numbers people in the organization. And, you know, if you have a $10 million category, and last year, you outsold your inventory, and you were up in sales, maybe this year allocated $15 million in your category, that open to buy as a total revenue number broken back into units at average retail, and then that lays in how you can fill in that open to buy based upon garments in your particular to your niche within your category about how you feel those things, what the what the average sell off and turn is of those particular items within a season, how much is gonna go on promotion, and markdown. And all those things come into a position that says you need to buy at this retail X amount of units. Start that at the season flow in every month, certain units to hit that overall number. So that's the open to buy, within that open to buy. With detailed analysis. With some forecasting with some testing on new trend and things that go into that you can develop what's called an assortment plan and an assortment plan can take a lot of different shapes and forms and people can use different versions of assortment plan. But for the purpose as an organization, we sit with clients to define what their buys going to look like for a particular season by breaking that out in core fashion, basic and fashion by category nets, wovens, outerwear, bottoms, accessories, etc. And then what those units look like in terms of a buy, on the far right side what that MSRP is what that MSRP extended is so they can look at their total revenue. And then we break that and return it back on two levels a wholesale back to cost or a direct back to cost on a direct to consumer model. And then that provides a template for establishing units at a price of a particular style. And then that helps, then you reverse engineer products to hit those price points. And you dialogue about if it doesn't hit a particular price point, you know, do we raise MSRP, do we take a lesser margin, because we're testing new product, it begins the dialogue of creating that assortment for your particular category for a month, or a quarter, or a season or a year. And what you're going to be buying what you're going to buy to, you know, like we mentioned earlier, 40, to 60%, in core. So if you have an assortment plan, based upon this open to buy, and you're going out buying tons of leopard print shirts, you realize that you still have to cover 40% of that bike and solid color polos for crewnecks or something. So you don't over buy these fashion items to your core base that's driving that business,

Emily Lane  15:56

it really empowers you on your budget too. Because you can really look at that assortment plan and go, Okay, you know what your minimums are to get into a particular style, you have that number and you know what your your goal retail prices, then you can kind of use that formula that we talked about your cost to wholesale, to retail, and then boom, you multiply that all out. And now you know what it's what the target cost is, when you calculate that out across your entire collection, you know what your budget is,

Bret Schnitker  16:27

and you sort of have a guiding light on, on what type of items and what categories you're you're going to buy, you can do a much more detailed assortment plan from that over reaching a certain plan that kind of breaks it into generality. You know, whenever we looked at business, the one big unknown factor is no one has a crystal ball. And so you could always look back at history. But business evolves. And it's always evolving, right and one number one constant is change. And so with business evolving, the thing that we would look at look at as buyers as what's trending recently, and we would break down, let's say a particular, let's say it was, I don't know, in all of our polka dotted shirt, right, and we'd put that into the test. And that was 3% of our buy. And it was trending at 10% of the business. Well, when you looked at 10% of the sales on 3% of the buyer, it's pretty easy to indicate that the customer is leading that by the demand exceeds supply. And that can be traded on a particular item like that, or on a category of product like cashmere sweaters, or whatever the case may be. And when you analyze that and you're seeing that demand exceeds supply, one of the adjustments that occur both in open to buy an assortment planning is that you're saying look, I don't have I'm not looking completely back at history, I'm looking at current trend or as current as I can for a particular season, and realize that I missed the boat or I'm missing the opportunity, because the customer is buying at a rate more than I am buying the actual inventory on. So I need to be a little bit more aggressive on this particular category in my next buy.

Emily Lane  18:09

Right? So we're really talking about once you got the product in house, now we're we're taking a look at those sales. And you know, a key factor is taking a look at week's supply to inform future decisions.

Bret Schnitker  18:21

Its percentage of sales 2% of inventory weeks of supply will help you determine how quickly you're going to run out of inventory. So the formula kind of works like this as a buyer, we would be penalized if you will, if we ran out of things too quickly. And so when you're analyzing business on a month on a weekly basis, we usually have planning meetings and sales review meetings, we'd always have it on Monday. So for those of you that haven't been in retail a long time, or salespeople trying to approach retail, never call it a Monday because everyone's doing post mortems of the sales of the week, previous week. Usually at least that's my understanding of it. But when you looked at those things, the other thing you would look at is this sell off percent. And so if you were selling at a rate of 10% sell off per week, that meant typically reselling 10% of your inventory by week. If it remains steady at a rate and it usually doesn't if you've got a lot of demand that sell off kind of increases, your inventory goes down. But you would all things remaining equal a 10 percents off loosely, would mean you had 10 weeks to supply when you looked at it on that day. Right? If it took you 14 weeks to get back in inventory, you knew you're gonna go you're going to be out of business for four weeks. So you better pull the trigger on a fill in or a buy and then figure out how to execute that 14 weeks supply in 10. Okay, if you were selling at a 8% sell off or a 6% sell off you would obviously subsequently how have longer weeks of supply. And if that fit into the timeline of when you could get back into goods, and waste the supplier really important on core basics. And they should be analyzed not only by the overall style, but by the color. And by the size.

Emily Lane  20:15

Read my mind, like, let's talk about the factors that should be in consideration. As you're watching your daily weekly sales.

Bret Schnitker  20:22

A lot of people would look at weeks of supply as the overall style. And they would never drill down, sometimes they would drill down to color. Many times they would drill down to color, especially on basics. But many times they would forget to be looking at the sell off by size. And these are additional complications as we live in a more inclusive world, because we're running, more sizes are running bigger sizes, we're running talls, we're running petite. And we net and you should never buy your buy across the board evenly by size. Because sales don't occur that way. And so you want to make sure that one year, you're trying to create this kind of bell curve where the majority of population kind of sits in terms of a particular size. And there's a lot of science out there to support that. But then after you do that initial buy, hopefully you've overbought a little bit so you don't sell out too quickly. Once you're broken, now you're that size is what it is right, you buy 3% of that size and you sell out, you're only going to sell 3%, right. But at one point in the initial distribution of that, and you see those initial sales when nothing is broken, you should be taking snapshots of what the percentage of sales are to the percentage of inventory by size. And then as you go back into by that item in terms of replenishment or fulfillment, you apply the new formula, if it makes sense to that new buy, and you're constantly massaging that that purchase by size. And then Oh especially this is done really well in the bottoms business, because bottoms overall don't have a lot of evolution today, they might have a little more. But you know, we all wear the same jean over and over again, we were, you know, the same khaki pant or whatever. And that's a really commodity type purchase. And so and they have a lot of sizes, more than sports sizing, you have lengths and waist sizes, and all of that. And so always analyzing sales when you have the inventory and massaging the inventory on an ongoing basis to make sure. And inevitably, over a period of time, you can be really pretty accurate in managing your inventory besides

Emily Lane  22:41

What is Tam and Sam? or who are Tam and Sam?  I should say, I don't know, tell me.

Bret Schnitker  22:47

Two guys live down the street. They provide us are,Chinese food. No, Tam and Sam tam is caught as a as a reference when we're looking at demographics and your customer market in terms of total available market. And Sam is the served available market. And this is a term that's used quite a bit in in business in different areas. It's important that you understand who your customer is, you know, and there's a more finite niche of a customer within an overall market. So outdoor athletes, you could say is the total available market of outdoor athletes. There's a bunch of people out there doing stuff in the outdoors, right? But a Sam could be the outdoor athlete that's climbing mountains, or the Sam is an outdoor athlete that's playing tennis. Those are the served available art that the more specific kind of group of people that you might be tailoring your business to, you might get fringe business in terms of the overall scope because a lot of apparel kind of blends borders, etc. Pardon me. But the served available market is something that you should be really looking at. And as you're making decisions on product, you should be concentrating on how big that market is, what their buying habits are. And then analyzing that particular business. We were just on the call earlier about a very unique customer, where it kind of flies in the face of typical retail. When you look in typical retail, a lot of retailers do do a big percentage of their business around the holiday, right? People are buying gifts businesses up this particular client that we've been working with for a while. Their their business occurs very heavily in the warmer months because it is an outdoor activity. And in looking at that business, they had approached us and said help us because we were buying into thinking that business was going to explode in the winter and it didn't really materialize and is we really dialogued about that served available market, the market that's more finite and directed to them. We recognized that when we analyze that business they'd have large shifts of growth. In the months of the warmer weather months, it would start sometime in April. through August or September, yeah, yeah. And it would climb up through August or September. So the bell curve when you're analyzing business every year, another retail math number is that you should always be breaking out your overall revenue by month. January is 3% of my business, February is 10% of my business, you know, marches, whatever, and it climbs and then you tailor your deliveries to fall in line with when your big revenue months are your big demand months are and you tailor down your inventory when your revenue months or not.

Emily Lane  25:47

We're talking about you know, your your typical your, your months when things are going well, what about when markdowns come into play?

Bret Schnitker  25:55

Sure. Well, we all live in markdown world I've lived in many times. Sometimes those markdowns are boy, I made a mistake. I thought it was going to be the next best thing. And it's the number one worst thing. And every buyer, we'll go through that and, and we talk about that. And as I mentioned a little earlier, good, bad and ugly. I as a buyer, I always had a good bad and ugly wall. Good was something that I thought was gonna be

Emily Lane  26:23

You really want to look at that all the time. Do you want to be like I did. So well? Yeah, truth is-

Bret Schnitker  26:28

And I would put in the bad section, something I thought was good that would underperform. And then ugly was what was I thinking.

Emily Lane  26:34

You don't want to look at it anymore. But you have to you have to-

Bret Schnitker  26:37

You have to sare at that. And hopefully not make that mistake. Again. We're human beings. We're always repeat our mistakes, probably but, but that really helps. And so when you look at kind of those things in conjunction with, you know, those other comments always look at good, bad and ugly.

Emily Lane  26:52

What about promotions and sales?

Bret Schnitker  26:53

Sure. So promotions and markdowns, obviously, in my mind, they're kind of two different things, yet there's still an impact to revenue. The markdowns on that good, bad and ugly thing that I guess I should finish that answer is that markdowns can be addressed for the ugly and marked down sometimes are that you bought something that was good that you just bought too many, and it's seasonal, and you have to clear them out because heavy wool sweaters in the summer aren't gonna sell- And with markdowns, the one thing I again, an old saying is your first marked down as your best marked down, don't walk timidly in that night recognized for what it is, and get rid of it. liquidate it, it's not going to get better. Okay. Promotions are a little bit different. And you know, a lot of this goes to consumer behavior, although that Amazon's changing some of that consumer behavior. And we're seeing evidence with our retailers that are out there that it is changing. But we we've been trained as consumers to always wait for the deal. And I always joke about women in the gift bag scenario with makeup and it's like, hey, this makeup line is put it out, I get a free gift with purchase. I'm buying, right? You're trained. And they know that you're trained. And so they have these periods of the year that they launched the gift with purchase. And they know without question that they're going to drag some people in because I'm almost through that makeup. But it's gift with purchase. Oh,

Bret Schnitker  28:29

Oh I'm so guilty,

Bret Schnitker  28:31

Everyone. They've got back to a science, promotions in whatever way whether it's a gift with purchase, whether it's a buy one, get one free, whether it's a percentage off, all of those things are things that our society to different degrees react to, it's the deal I bought this on sale

Emily Lane  28:54

Makes you feel even better.

Bret Schnitker  28:55

You know, the interesting part behind the wall is that retailers have wizened up to that. So sometimes the MSRPs are inflated so that they can just give the sale. Yeah, and know that once we launched the sale, sales are going to come into their own, we're going to meet our margins based upon that. But to show the markdown, we've inflated our retail and again, with every kind of conditioning that the human being has, especially in in our aspect of sales and promotion. There's science behind it on what people are doing in terms of that and so promotions are are things that will drive more business at certain times of the year when you have higher inventory or it's a planned opportunity where you buy more in maths. And you're intentionally planning that as a promotion for a period of time and that you can calculate that when you run that promotion versus non perm. motion, sales will lift by 30%. So you're actually buying heavier into that item. For a planned promotion. It's a way to drive more business.

Emily Lane  30:08

Yeah you gotta track track those promotions too. Because if you find some formulas that are, or some incentives that are working particularly well, at a particular time a year, that's really good to note for your business. Oh,

Bret Schnitker  30:21

yeah, all of these metrics. When we discuss that with our clients, it's super important to keep history and it's super important to track your sales in whatever way you can, at these proper times, whether it's weekly, with inventory and sell off, you know, numbers tell the story many times in terms of history, and they can also help you tell this story and help you decipher a little bit of crystal ball in terms of trend, you know, if you apply the right metrics.

Emily Lane  31:00

Let's talk about pre sale and how that can effect your bottom line.

Bret Schnitker  31:04

Yeah, that is an amazing trend. I wish that was around when I was in retail. Because again, the Overbite underbite and you know, having inventory and you know, pre sale is this crazy anomaly we're seeing more and more of and again, this week, we had a discussion with a client about the success of presale, you know, and there are certain people that have kind of adopted that, let's say during COVID. And they've kept it because the model is working. And I won't name three furniture stores Our House, Restoration Hardware, and Crate and Barrel. But, you know,

Emily Lane  31:40

we happen to love very much,

Bret Schnitker  31:42

but boy have they pulled something amazing off with the with the US consumer, the consumer in general. You know, you walk in, and you're like, Hey, I'm gonna buy that $5,000 couch on the lake, great. Pay us, they're like, Okay, let's run the card. And they charge you for it and they go, we'll deliver it to you in nine months. Yes. And you're like, what? And they're like, No, it's gonna take nine months, we're gonna build it and deliver it to you. And, and, and in many cases, these groups are accomplishing sales up front. The cash sits in their coffers. And that cash that you're paying is both cost and profit. And it's sitting in their conference for nine months. And so the realization that that's occurring in certain parts of this overall consumer industry, and then we're seeing it happen and be successful also in apparel, absolutely. Especially for brands that are kind of startups or brands, and probably of every size, but But effectively, Small Business and niche, they can actually go to their customer and say, Look, we're launching a new style. We're telling a story, we're letting people know about it. And we're going to offer presale. And there's two levels of presale, there's that Buy Now get nine months later. And there is a buy now get four weeks later. And what that's doing is front loading the demand of a particular sale, allowing by three or four weeks before the goods are in there probably manufactured and in route. But they can gauge early the demand on those sales, they can book those, those numbers into their revenue stream. And they can immediately proactively plan additional deliveries to be delivering to fill in for the voids that they know they're gonna have well, before they receive their first shipment.

Emily Lane  33:40

And based on the math that we talked about earlier of your retail versus your cost, we know that once they get to kind of that 25% mark of inventory sold through there, they're really ahead in profit,

Bret Schnitker  33:56

Well you paid for the cost of goods, you know, you still have overhead and all these related expenses, but you've paid for the goods that 25% And so, you know, it's it's an amazing trend that's occurring. And we highly recommend that that done correctly, done kind of transparently, you know, it's a positive. The other thing where it's a positive to that there's a big dialogue going on is in the world of sustainability and landfill. If we could get to a point as a consumer, although we're not going to wholesale, I don't believe but if we get to a point where we partner with our brands, and we put these reorders in and we're buying specifically the units that are going or they're they're buying specifically the units that are going to be purchased and worn by their customer, you're eliminating these markdowns, you're eliminating these over buys and wastes that go into landfill. So it is a positive kind of trend that's going on. And I think you know that in addition to the ability to help fund growing businesses is a good thing.

Emily Lane  35:05

Thats great. Well, thank you for sharing this incredible art of numbers. I know that when you started the business originally, you were a creative. And as you've gone through your career and into the path of a CEO, you've learned, of course, that there's beauty in numbers as well.

Bret Schnitker  35:24

And when we did it to begin with, it was like scratch numbers on the stone. And now we're using computers. But yeah, any

Emily Lane  35:31

any final thoughts to share?

Bret Schnitker  35:33

Yeah just don't be intimidated by numbers. understand those numbers, understand how those are related to the buys that you're making. We all we all buy, sometimes emotionally, we all get excited about certain things. I, you know, my biggest challenge is the visionaries. They always get excited about things, the new shiny objects, and they want to move faster than we should. And, you know, having people ground you with numbers and having a good partner that can run those numbers and help you make those decisions is really valid. And I would urge everyone to have that balance in the decisions that they make.

Emily Lane  36:13

Wonderful. Well, thank you so much for all of that insight. I knew we could make the conversation about math really cool

Bret Schnitker  36:20

And the rest of you wake up next time.

Emily Lane  36:24

All right, well, thank you for being here today. And don't forget to subscribe to stay apprised of upcoming episodes of Clothing Coulture.

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The Sexy Side of The Business: Retail Math