When Restoration Hardware founder Stephen Gordon decided to expand his home goods store by purchasing a lease in New York City’s expensive SoHo district, it could have turned into quite the nightmare without the help of Steve Jobs.
Restoration Hardware was already doing big business with its New York City flagship store located in the Flatiron district, but SoHo is notorious for sky-high lease prices that require store’s there to rake in “mega-millions” in revenue to afford the space.
Mistakes happened along the way. Perhaps one of the biggest occurred in New York City, where we opened a successful store in the Flatiron district. We thought we’d do the same in SoHo but didn’t realise that SoHo was all about new, offbeat, and irreverent. We were in the old SoHo post office and did millions in sales, but in New York, you need mega-millions to afford the real estate. Fortunately, I was able to survive the mistake by selling the lease to Steve Jobs when he was just starting Apple stores and made quite a profit.
Jobs then turned the space into an Apple Store, which opened on July 18, 2002.
You can read Gordon’s full Fortune interview here, or you can check out more photos of Apple’s SoHo store below.