I'm Michael Weintraub, founder of AfterRetail. I have discount DNA in my blood. I am third generation merchant. I can't escape it, though I tried. As a first generation American of a Holocaust-surviving father, I had more-or-less three career choices after graduating college (UCSB 1981 BA): doctor, lawyer or President! I chose lawyer, and I dutifully went off to Law and Business School (USC 1984 JD/MBA). After practicing law for a couple years, I came to the realization that I wasn't happy. I had grown up working for my father in his stores in Downtown Los Angeles since I was 8 years old. I watched and learned the retail trade in women's clothing at my father's side as he did in the 1920's and 30's in Poland in my Zaide's (Yiddish for grandfather's) general store.
Prior to leaving the Beverly Hill's law firm of Ervin, Cohen and Jessup as a second year associate, I asked my father on a flight to Cabo San Lucas for a family vacation if he would allow me to join him in his business. I leaned across the aisle on the plane and said, "Pop, I am miserable. Do you want me?" My father said back to me, "Of course!" That was my entry into my own business. Fast forward 29 years, I can now look back on my somewhat circuitous path to AfterRetail...of course, thanks all to my father (96 years young in the photo).
I started my own business specializing in women's eveningwear from prom to mother-of-the-bride in 1991 just after getting married. I called my store Dressed Up! I was THE store in greater Los Angeles for special occasion dresses from 1991 to 2010. Something began to change about ten years ago that I saw in our declining sales at Dressed Up! My regular clientele was aging, women in general were getting less dressed up for events, and the internet was providing customers with a plethora of options. I read the tea leaves and soon realized that my future was not secure.
I soon reasoned that the internet was not a threat but an opportunity, and I started selling on eBay as The SampleSale Guy and soon thereafter on Amazon as The Boutique Rack. I changed genre of clothing from women's eveningwear to women's daytime fashions. I sharpened my innate negotiating skills (part DNA and part learned by working with my father) as I scoured the wholesale apparel marketplaces in Los Angeles, New York and Montreal looking for the best deals for my e-commerce customers. I continue this same pursuit to this day, almost 9 years later.
In order to better serve my e-commerce customers I have opened AfterRetail to provide the best and easiest access to all of my efforts in delivering real value on highly-sought after designers.