Convenience Store News

FEB 2017

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WWW.CSNEWS.COM | FEBRUARY 2017 | Convenience Store News 19 SMALL OPERATOR us one label. We just roll with it. As long as people are talking about [Mini Mini], that's a good thing." Indeed, the buzz swirls. Local news outlets have both praised and poked fun at the new convenience store, pointing out there are no canned goods or fro - zen pizzas sold, for instance. "So, the joke is, we are a glorified snack shop," Brown relayed. In reality, the store's assortment is built around the notion that everything revolves around grab-and-go but with a streamlined choice, rather than a cluttered and chaotic heap of emergency shopping SKUs. There is a calm here that isn't typically found in the confines of a c-store, and it's attracting attention. CLASSIC VS. RAD The Mini Mini concept is the creation of Brown and one of his partners, Jonathan Felix-Lund, who both started toying with the idea four years ago. While on a business road trip, they recognized a need for "a refined version of a convenience store" that was easy to access and played to different diets. They envisioned a mix of the indulgent and the healthy, with meat options as well as vegan and gluten-free options, but L ocal media has dubbed Mini Mini as "Portland's First Hipster-Themed Convenience Store," but one of its founders refutes this label, explaining that Mini Mini is a "modern convenience concept" that is somewhat misunderstood, but in it for the long haul. "People need to label everything so that it fits in a box, but the truth is, we don't fit in a box. When we opened Mini Mini, nobody knew what to do with it," co-owner Matt Brown, 35, told Convenience Store News, speaking about the public reaction to the minimalist-designed single store that opened this past September in Portland's Buckman neighborhood. "People walk in and say, 'I think this is a c-store, but I've never seen anything like it.' Then, the fact that my business partners and I are young, it's easy to clas- sify [the store] as a 'hipster mart.'" Mini Mini was designed by Brown and its three other founders/investors to be hip, but also to have a much broader appeal than just to Portland's hipster crowd. From families with little kids, to daytime profes- sionals, to nighttime city folks, "we want everyone to feel welcome," Brown said. "It's interesting they gave Hip, But Not Just for Hipsters A minimalist design offering streamlined SKUs is the cornerstone of Mini Mini's strategy By Renée M. Covino Mini Mini strives for less "visual noise." Mini Mini is the brainchild of four co-founders/investors, who plan to expand into a chain.

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