Five Below is officially a Southern California resident! The trendy, extreme-value retail chain that has established itself as an east coast fixture has made its way west, opening nine locations throughout the Orange County and Los Angeles areas this past weekend. To kick off the festivities, all nine stores simultaneously opened their doors on Friday, April 21st with a grand opening that included music, food, product giveaways, and even the Laker Girls! Working alongside Five Below, the Worldlink team was on site at the Aliso Viejo, California location to show our support and ensure everything went off without a hitch.
One of the fastest growing retailers in the country, Five Below is no stranger to opening a new location. Since its founding in 2002, the company has grown to include approximately 550 stores in 32 states – with no plans to slow down any time soon. “Our growth westward has been careful and strategic, and well worth the wait as we believe Five Below will have a tremendous reception and reaction in Southern California,” said Joel Anderson, CEO of Five Below. “We’re not just dipping our toe in the Pacific with these openings, we’re diving in with nine stores and several more to follow within a matter of months. We expect California to be our largest state for stores in the coming years.” The company plans to open approximately 100 stores across the U.S. in 2017, bringing its total location count to 620 by year-end. “Worldlink Integration Group has worked closely with Five Below over the years to help facilitate this growth”, states John Fecteau, CEO of Worldlink Integration Group. “Our partnership in their migration west has included great stops in the following states: FL GA, AL, OH, IN, IL, WI, KS, MO, LA and TX. We are excited to continue to grow these areas as well as help them bring their brand to many more.”
Terry Sisco, Director of Construction at Worldlink, shed some light on what it takes to smoothly and successfully open a new Five Below location. With only 3-4 days from start to finish, there is little room for error in the setup process. He shared the biggest challenge he faces is making sure the install team is well armed with all information necessary to be successful on site – especially when opening in a new market. He attributes their success to a diligent and hardworking team, clear documentation, and strong communication. And while the process is not an easy one, there’s genuine excitement that comes along with venturing into new territory. Terry shares, “My favorite part about this project is bringing Five Below to California after seven years of it being on the East Coast.”
The Worldlink team members aren’t the only ones who enjoy seeing their efforts come to fruition. Virgene Lukaszewski, Store Manager and New Store Merchandiser at Five Below, also shared how much she enjoys being a part of new store openings. Her favorite part is seeing how technology can bring a brand and its customers together – a role Worldlink takes great pride in. For example, the Five Below grand opening included a complete sound system and DJ, enabling the store to interact directly with its customers. Virgene also explained just how important an efficient point of sale system is to delivering high quality customer service that extends far beyond the grand opening. “It is our POS system that keeps our stores running. It keeps our customers happy and our systems intact for faster, smoother processes.” We couldn’t be more proud to be a part of Five Below’s expansion and look forward to the journey ahead!