Yazid Aksas, the founder of Public Factory, leases large spaces and then subdivides them up for short-term rentals. His next venture will open at 310 W. Broadway between Grand and Canal streets on September 22. It will house his menswear label Beau.com and it will also have 11 other designers.
As Mr. Aksas said, “The terms and conditions to open your own store are so out of whack compared to what most people can afford.” Many landlords expect a 10 year lease and there are often large construction costs as well. As a result, he decided to open his store together with 11 others. The dozen labels will share 3300 square feet and members will pay a monthly fee of $3000 for about 100 square feet. Brands have to commit to three months.
As he said, “We are the ones taking the risks—we build the space and manage it, pay electricity and Internet and those things designers don’t want to deal with. They just have to worry about the product and brand marketing.”
Mr. Aksas has signed a ten year deal with the SoHo Grand Hotel and there will be an entrance to Public Factory and a street-side entryway.
Ladies don’t despair – he is also planning to open a similar model in SoHo for women’s wear labels and has about 25 brands on the waiting list.