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Okay Calgary area retailers.... hear me out on this one. Alberta is getting hit HARD. Like....HARD. My name is Carrie Paxson and I own Carrie's Closet (ladies apparel) and BeautyGram (gift baskets). I feel fortunate that I am doing okay despite this recession, but I am very aware that I need to watch my overhead, cut costs, be ready for anything and truthfully, find new suppliers since 90% of mine were in the United States, so restocking is a onerous process. I am carrying some awesome (but to my audience) dead stock and I am not interested in moving it below wholesale. We are taking enough of a shitkicking already without doing that too. This idea may be unorthodox, but I want to create a collective of Calgary Retailers, both brick and mortar and online businesses for an inventory swap and sale. I know I have awesome inventory in my store that needs a new audience. I also know that I need new stock to entice my customers checking back with me, but I have capital tied up in the stock that isn't moving at the rate it once did. New stock also generates fresh content for my social media campaigns. Nothing worse than coming back to an online store and nothing has changed, or posting excessive inspirational quotes because there is nothing new to show my customers, right? We may on some level be competitors, but I think this climate requires us to stick together. I know that if our businesses are "compatible" I would rather buy (or exchange) some of your dead stock for some of mine, rather than have to fly to Vancouver, or spend an all expense weekend at Trends Edmonton. I have five ecommerce marketplaces and no storefront. Maybe you have a storefront but do not sell online? Maybe the swap could be me adding some of your stock to my amazon store, in exchange for you putting some of my compatible gear into your storefront? Lets talk! I think if we make the right connections here, we can either cash out on dead stock, exchange stock on par on wholesale rates, or simply (in my case) I can put some of your inventory on my website, if you are willing to take the same dollar value in your storefront. The key is to move inventory for both parties, so that we are generating cash flow. Lets figure out how to get creative in this market, and keep our stock looking fresh for our customers. We need to be as creative as ever in this climate. I have lots of suggestions of how this "could" work, but I think where it needs to start is getting committed retailers in the same room to network, and to figure out where the connections are, and let the deals happen as they may. Maybe no stock is exchanged or sold, but it results in cross promotions? Deals take trust, chemistry, partnerships - I am interested in people joining this group that are looking to make a positive contribution to this community. Lets get creative, find trusted alliances, and see how we can create synergies to help move our stock, and each other's stock both online and in-store. Please be prepared to either show some inventory you are looking to swap or sell, or have a link to your website to show potential partners, and private appointments can be made outside of the meetup. We want to make the best use of everyone's time.

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