Green Bay Couple Turns Trauma, Epidemic Layoffs Into Business, Louveni


Green Bay’s Lauren and Dan Hunter have developed brands that have grown on mission and trauma.

“Dan was hit by a car when he was little and was pronounced dead at the scene,” Lauren said. “The doctors said that he will not be able to walk or talk, let alone give birth to children.” Dan’s brand is one of our initiatives to continue building a rich family legacy. He wants to be able to tell his story to uplift and inspire others.

Not only did her husband survive; The couple has grown up. They are parents of five children, including daughters aged 5 to 16, and young entrepreneurs aged 12 and 14.

Seeing their daughters selling lip gloss and tie shirts in pop-up shops was even more inspiring. A year ago, Luveeny (www.luveenywear.com) became a reality.

“We thought about this business after losing our job during the pandemic. We don’t have to worry about that happening again because we want to have a business.” Lauren said.

Since she and her husband both love fashion, they decided on this kind of business. They started with hats, and as they got better, they started adding designs with the goal of making unique items at a good price.

“When I was a kid, I always loved going to fashion shows, but my family was on a low income, so we couldn’t afford it,” Lauren said. “That’s what’s great about this business. It is high fashion at an affordable price.

The business is described as a luxury, urban streetwear brand. The name is derived from the phrase “envious love” and is also the brand’s slogan. She says that even if there is envy in the world, love will prevail.

Their website adds, “Wearing the Louvini brand is an expression of the heart. It’s like wearing positive affirmations around your soul, saying that no matter how bad the pain, love always wins.

As she and Dan work to spread this message and develop a successful business, they have a mentor, Laurel Hack, of the Green Bay SCORE chapter.

“One thing we’ve learned so far is to find a mentor and use all the resources out there. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and network, because you might find someone who can help you,” said Lauren.

Daniel agrees and advises that research is important. Before investing in a business, you need to know what the cost will be.

The pair use their strengths as they work to promote their brand. Although Dan believes they would be better off with more business experience, they both speak of commitment, drive and consistency.

“We wake up every day as much as possible and live and breathe our brand,” Lauren said.

The process is a learning experience. They have created a website and social media pages (on Facebook, Instagram and TikTok), both e-commerce and retail exposure to sell their products, and are coordinating the legal and financial aspects through their SCORE consultancy.

“Laurel is helping us fill out the forms we need,” she said. “We didn’t know anything about business at first, but we are learning as we ask questions. I had to restart my business plan, and Laurel is helping with that. All in all, it’s a huge boost for my future success.

Temporarily there were challenges. They have a manufacturer but want to buy equipment so they can do the work themselves and increase profitability. They rent a small shop in downtown Green Bay where they want to add a printer, embroidery machine and other equipment.

“We’re saving everything we can to buy the machinery,” Lauren said.

Trying to get to that point, they work part time at other jobs and spend all day on business. Their daughters were part of the process and helped with designs for tees, hats and caps. It is truly a family business with long term goals.

“I want this business to be big, and I want it to be generational,” Lauren said. One of the girls has an eye for fashion and wants to be a part of it. It would be nice to have a team and be able to have a large manufacturing plant in front of a retail store.

You know the journey won’t be easy. As Daniel discovered by studying the competition, they have to find a place in a very crowded environment. They hope their message and creative design will make them stand out.

To this end, their marketing plan includes pop-up shops, capturing email addresses to promote new products, social media engagement and networking. They post photos on Instagram and have partnered with a gallery in Depere to sell them locally.

“The biggest challenge going forward is finding loyal customers,” Lauren commented. “We have a unique story to tell, and our business is positive affirmation for people in need. They can look at us and say, ‘If you can do this with five kids, we can do it.’

Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt is co-owner of DB Commercial Real Estate in Green Bay and former district director of SCORE, Wisconsin.





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