FAUSTINE: Our buyers are fantastic and they do a lot of the work that keeps us competitive with larger stores. We’re very lucky that people are constantly asking to do business with us including local Maine businesses. We sell a lot of Maine-made food products which have a huge market. It allows small producers to get their product in several locations across the state. We are dabbling with online sales as well to be a compliment to our stores. It’s exciting to be continually growing and we hope to keep that going throughout Maine.
DESIREE: Something that sets Renys apart from bigger corporations is our ability to recognize immediate customer wants and tailor the buying to that.
Our store has a list of things customers come in looking for that gets sent to the buyers so we can be responsive and actually make use of suggestions.
FAUSTINE: Even though we are a fairly big business now, I think we feel very small and connected to the communities we are in.
DESIREE: I’ve worked in three different stores now and each one feels like a family. I think a major part of that is the relationship employees get to have with the leaders and people in charge. You can work for other companies and never even meet the owners. Our leadership all starts from the bottom and works their way up. I started in the Manager-In-Training Program and have been here for ten years, now.
FAUSTINE: I think that keeping our storefronts in downtown areas has been a huge component of that relationship, too. Something very special in Maine is how downtown areas are still thriving and for many of the larger towns, Renys is a flagship store.
It’s this reciprocal relationship with local restaurants and other small businesses of drawing shoppers onto Main Streets and being able to get everything you need in one trip. We feed off each other’s successes. Maine communities supporting local is something that I don’t see going away anytime soon and we are still very much a family-run business 70 years later.
TOM: Gardiner has seen a lot of change over time but especially in the past few years our business has seen growth that is also reflected in the surrounding community. There’s definitely been this united effort between long-term businesses and organizations like Johnson Hall and Gardiner Main Street to make Gardiner a destination. It’s not just a commuter city, but it has become a great place to live and because of that we have seen the uptick in business as well. We are committed to Gardiner and want to continue to help it reach its full potential.
The Reny family and local management have made Renys an anchor in Downtown Gardiner since 1956. #thinkgardinerfirst A special thanks to Faustine Reny (Owner & Operations Manager), Tom Burr (Regional Supervisor), and Desiree Burnham (Gardiner Manager) for sitting down to chat about their store. You can visit and shop at 185 Water Street or at www.renys.com. Follow Renys on Facebook and Instagram (@RenysAMaineAdventure) for a look into the Maine adventure. Looking for a job? Reny’s is hiring for multiple locations, including Gardiner!