Boxes and piles of clothes weren’t the only thing filling up the back room at the newly located Once Upon a Child (OUAC) in Bismarck. A group of YP’ers joined owner Tricia Arenz on Wednesday, November 12, where they learned about her entrepreneurial venture with the new & gently used children’s “stuff” store. OUAC buys new and used children’s clothing and resells the items for a profit.
Arenz, originally from Mandan, is the owner/manager and does all of her own marketing (including writing & recording her radio ads), as well as work the register. Arenz told the group “…your business is like having another child.” She shared that you have to put in the time and be available wherever you might be needed.
Like with many franchise stores, Arenz applied to own and operate the Bismarck store. They are part of the OUAC franchise, but have freedom to make their own decisions when it comes to things like marketing and pricing. The Bismarck franchise is one of over 300 locations throughout the US and Canada, with 3 stores in North Dakota (including Fargo & Grand Forks).
When Arenz and her mother opened the store in March of 2005, it was a rough and slow beginning, getting the idea of OUAC to catch on. Things started to slowly progress and in June of 2012, there was an incredible change for the good when clothes started piling up and they found out that the more inventory they had on the floor, the higher the sales and the more new customers came in as well.