A Trip to City Hall with Meg

Time to tackle the grownup stuff, featuring a new bank account and business license.

Hero image for Issue #13: Bank Account and Business License

A conversation between me and a co-worker a few months ago:

“Hey, Meg! I was just thinking about the store and wanted to ask you…where’s the money going?” -Matt from accounting

“We’re giving away all of the money to nonprofits we love!” -me

“That is awesome, but not what I meant. When people purchase items, where does their money go?” -Matt from accounting

“…” -me

I do as it turns out.

This conversation was the start of turning our store into a business. With the help of our legal team, we decided to make Freddie and Co. an LLC with its own license and tax ID and everything. That meant a lot of searching around on government websites and asking the opinions of those who had done that before. Do you know how much paperwork you have to do to get a business license?

This is one of my favorite things I’ve done so far for this project. Armed with paperwork and money orders, I trekked to city hall one afternoon on a mission.

I got directed from one counter to the next, to different offices, up some stairs, back down, and then all the way back to where I started. The whole time I was just beaming.

I don’t know what it was. Probably excitement for finally making the store official. But it also felt like everyone else in the building was equally excited. Here’s what one woman told the cashier as she handed over her money order: “I have been waiting for years to open my business. It’s going to be huge.”

Since that first conversation with Matt, me and a few people from our legal and accounting teams have been meeting weekly to keep up with all these details. We talk about things like trademarking the logo and refunding people for the tax that we shouldn’t have been charging. Sometimes, there’s nothing much to talk about, and sometimes we have to figure out how VAT might affect our shipping rates.

The stuff we talk about each week never crossed my mind when I first started working on the store. I was focused on the concept and the creative elements, but setting up our bank account and getting the business license were clearly pretty important, too. It made me wonder if that was common. Surely it happens to lots of entrepreneurs. I can’t imagine that a trip to the city zoning office is ever really part of anyone’s big dream, but it was actually very interesting and fun!

Okay, enough business talk. Next week I have big news: our new collection! I can’t wait to show you!😀

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