SOURCE: The Suit Closet

February 19, 2007 10:00 ET

Jackpot Winner Is Well-Suited for Business; Offers New Concept for Women

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- February 19, 2007 -- As a girl, Vani Kumar would spend hours dressing for school. Her mother would scold, "School is not a fashion show." Today Kumar's mother appreciates her daughter's passion. Kumar graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising and went straight to work selling women's fine suits. Customers had shopping horror stories to share. They worked outside the home all week and spent what little free time they had on weekends going from department store to department store in search of the perfect suit. The selection was limited. Men have traditionally had it easier to find their suits in a single location. Kumar had a solution that would fill the void for women, making their lives easier and offering the variety they craved. So at just 25, Kumar drew up a business plan for "The Suit Closet." This would be a one-stop shop for working women in search of name-brand suits at reasonable prices. One thousand women's suits, all sizes and shades, for sale in one location. Kumar worked tirelessly, but a realist, she knew it would take time to raise the money needed. This is where luck came in.

Kumar and her parents took a vacation to Las Vegas and while not big gamblers, they tried their luck at the Bellagio. Kumar headed to the dollar slots, forty dollars in hand. And then it happened. Jackpot! The flashing screen read, "$286,656." "I never felt like I was a quarter million dollars richer. It was more like the loan for my business had been approved," Kumar says. Six months earlier she had projected the amount she needed to open "The Suit Closet." After taxes, Kumar was within two hundred dollars of that exact amount! "I can only explain it as divine intervention," Kumar says.

Back in LA, Kumar signed a lease on the very downtown location she had scouted months earlier. Now, four months after opening her first store, Kumar has plans to expand to other cities. And her website ( will soon offer an online catalog and tips on careerwear.

Kumar jokes that she and her 3 siblings were born "pre-med," destined to follow in the footsteps of her father, the doctor. Vani Kumar has chosen a different path, one that truly suits her.

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