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Building a better outlet store

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Josue Dubon, co-owner of North Point Outlet.

PHOTO BY SCOTT BILLECK Enlarge Image

Josue Dubon, co-owner of North Point Outlet. Photo Store

The owners of the popular JC Tacos and More restaurants are taking their passion for serving people into the clothing business with their brand-new North Point Outlet establishment.

Marvin and Mayra Dubon have been serving Winnipeggers since 2010 with their Latin American-inspired family recipes at JC Tacos. Their three Winnipeg locations have been dishing out fresh and healthy food, and now the Dubon’s son, Josue, is the taking that spirit in a different direction. While Josue is a co-owner alongside his father, he owns the majority of the business and calls the shots at the store.

"It’s definitely an experience most 19-year-olds don’t get to experience," Dubon said on owning his own business. "I took the opportunity and ran with it."

That opportunity was North Point Outlet, which has now been open for a month and aims to be a retail clothing store providing fine threads at a discounted price.

"Basically, we wanted to bring something to the community which was different," Dubon’s father Marvin, who’s partnering with his son at the 189 Henderson Ave. business, said. "We wanted to do a discount store with brand-name products. So we get product from stores with surpluses and bring them into our place."

Dubon has been taking business courses at the University of Manitoba, and his father feels there isn’t a better way to put his new-found knowledge to good work than running his own store.

"It gives him something to do, to implement his knowledge from the business course that he has been taking," Marvin said.

"I’m pretty happy with it so far," added Dubon. "It’s something that I could see myself doing over and over again."

The store is full of brand-new products, many of which come from Costco. Brands like Kirkland can be found on the racks at North Point, with items from jeans to shirts, with sizes ranging from toddlers to adults.

"We want to help someone in the area," said Dubon. "The response has been great, it’s been amazing. We never expected it. Media, Facebook, word of mouth, people are finding out about it."

For Marvin, his vision is to give back as much has he can. He knows what poverty looks like, having grown up in El Salvador before moving to Winnipeg in the 1980s as an 18-year-old, seeking safety from the Salvadoran Civil War.

"My past was a little rough, I come from a country where there was a lot of trouble," said Marvin. "Poverty was visual there, and we have it Canada, too, but we just don’t see it as much. People in Winnipeg are looking for deals, not because we have a lot of money, but because we need those deals to live.

"This is the thing that motivates me. And we want to bring in good products, no garbage."

Marvin said he wants to help others through business.

"It’s not just another business for me," said Marvin, who has had many different ventures in his years in Winnipeg. "It doesn’t work like that way. I have to benefit others before I benefit myself. It’s very rewarding, even if you don’t make money. I’d probably make more money working for minimum wage, but it’s not about that. It’s about who benefits from what we do.

"And we are doing OK, because of that reason and because of that focus."

Josue, meanwhile, has aspirations to be a lawyer one day and is working his way there while taking those business courses on the side. One thing is for certain — he’s still all business.

"Maybe I’ll get into business law," he jokes. "I’ve always been in business all my life, it comes so naturally to me. I was raised in this."

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