Grandpa is a scandinavian lifestyle store, with a motto ‘Good People, Good Products, Good Impact’. Jonas and his two friends founded the store back in 2003 without either a business plan or experience in retail...
RETAILERS, RESTAURANTS, RETREATS
RETAILER • GRANDPA STORE • STOCKHOLM • SWEDEN
F: Can you tell us about GRANDPA?
JP. We founded the first store in Stockholm… we thought it needed a different kind of place, a place without anxiety which Stockholm sadly has a lot of. We wanted to create a place where different kinds of people could meet up, regardless of who you were.
F. What made you decide to open a lifestyle store?
JP. We came from the service sector, working as tour guides and in restaurants etc. After university we wanted to do something together, we were three guys who had always known each other. We talked about opening a bar, a restaurant or even a hotel, but we didn't have any money so opening a store was the cheapest way of starting a business. There wasn’t much on the shelves to start... But it grew, and I think our "success" pretty much depended on the fact that we didn't try to be anything but ourselves. We were honest and people liked it.
F. You've recently started selling Falcon enamelware. What’s your favourite product and what do you use it for?
JP. Well, I can't tell why we haven't sold Falcon before now, since I really like both the products and the story. We have sold some other enamel products but I mean, Falcon IS enamel products. So I'm glad we have started now…. I think my favourite product is the Tumbler. It's perfect for picnics and small hikes, especially with kids. I am also fond of the 3 pint jug, especially the one in Mustard Yellow which we use as a Vase at our country house.
F. Is there a specific dish that you would personally make using any of our Falcon products?
JP. Haha, this is a tricky question since I'm a terrible chef. But my girlfriend, who also works for Grandpa, likes the Loaf tin which is perfect for her own gluten free bread.
F. Are there any other local companies you'd like to shoutabout? Where do you usually eat, drink, and source ingredients in your local area?
JP. We have a lot of nice restaurants, bars and shops in our area which is called "Sofo" nowadays. It's a part of the district "Södermalm" and I can really recommend coming here when in Stockholm. My favourite café would be our neighbor "Il Café", and for dinner I like a pizza at "Bananas" and for a beer during the summer I would recommend "Bleck", it has a nice outdoor terrace. If you're in to buying locally produced food and nice ingredients I would say "Urban Deli" is a nice place to shop.
F. How have you been keeping during this time? Do you have any tips for small business owners?
JP. It has been hard, no question about it but now we are finally seeing a way out of this. For us the most difficult time was last spring and summer but during fall things started to move, especially online. Our physical stores are still struggling to get back to what sales looked like in 2019 but I think we will be back during summer and this fall. And as I mentioned, our online business has grown during the pandemic. Our take on this has always been to do what we do but a little bit harder. We had to fight for every penny and told our staff that every sale was important. We weren't allowed to have any events but we were allowed to be open so we did what we could in order to keep our costs low. We never shut any of our stores, we wanted to stay open even though it was hard. I think my tip would be to keep an open and positive mindset, work together and take help from your neighbour… do everything you can.
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