Curacao also will be opening a new store December 2 in San Diego’s Chula Vista Center – its first store in San Diego. In late January, Curacao will be opening another location in Arizona at the Tucson Mall, bringing the retailer to 15 stores in 2024.
“We are looking for the right opportunity to open stores in other states, as well as just even fill what area we currently have,” Lubary said. “There’s a lot of underserved customers that we would still like to help in the areas of Los Angeles, Orange County and southern California.”
In line, Curacao has several real estate locations that it is focused on securing for new store openings next year and in 2025. Curacao operates stand-alone stores as well as mall locations. Curacao’s format is roughly about 100,000 square feet to showcase the home furnishings and appliances it offers.
“We have everything you can imagine, basically, to support yourself within the house,” Lubary explained.
Still today, even with all the retailer’s expansion, Curacao has a significantly large population of Hispanic consumers. While Hispanic consumers don’t necessarily have different needs than other consumers today, Lubary explained, but they possibly have a greater need for access.
“We are known for approving many, many customers that others will not, because either they don’t have a FICO, they’re new to the country or their credit is just barely being established,” Lubary explained. “A lot of retailers might not feel comfortable extending credit lines to that consumer; that’s our focus consumer. We want to make sure that we offer those things to the customers so that they can get the things that they need.”
In addition to credit services, Curacao also offers travel services and money transfers. The retailer also has an export department where shoppers can send products to relatives in other countries, such as El Salvador or Guatemala.
Additionally, Curacao supports its local communities with a portion of each sale. Established in 2002, The Curacao Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to building a future in which communities are financially strong, socially empowered, respected and included. The Curacao Foundation has worked with more than 100 charities, organizations and institutions focusing on financial literacy, health, well-being, education and immigration, all within a 10-mile radius of a Curacao retail location. In addition, the foundation supports community partner organizations through general operation and program grants.
“This was one of our pillars that our founder started the day he opened his first store,” Lubary explained. “It was very important for him to make sure that our community knew that we were here in the good times and in the bad times.”
In regard to the holiday, Lubary believes the fourth quarter will be interesting.
“There is a lot of supply in the market,” he said. “It’s going to be very price driven. Consumers are looking for price today. I believe it’s going to be an incredible holiday season that’s going to be driven by price. We at Curacao have a leg up, which is why we have our price beat guarantee. So we offer even on those Black Friday deals that we will match it and beat the difference to any retailer that’s out there.”
Hear more about what Lubary expects for the holidays and in the first quarter of next year by listening to Retail Leader’s full interview with him. Subscribe to “Trend Talk” wherever you listen to podcasts.