I know it has been a while since I last posted. Life is supposed to get more clam once summer sets in BUT...that hasn't been the case for the McGrew household.
Anyway, I am here and alive and kicking and getting so excited for the 2013 CTMH Convention which is taking place in 2 short weeks! I am so excited to go and learn and come home and share a new Idea Book, new ideas and products and fun with y'all!
Last night CTMh had more exciting news to share. Below is a post written by our wonderful CEO, Jeanette Lynton. I am so proud to be a part of this AMAZING company!
I am honored, grateful, excited, optimistic, and pretty much overjoyed to let you know that Close To My Heart is officially expanding to Australia and New Zealand! It's so amazing that even though the deal was only finalized a few hours ago, I can't wait to share the news!
Here's how it came to be: One year ago this week, Close To My Heart attended one of the largest scrapbook expos in Australia, held in Brisbane. We sent a team to evaluate customers' response to our exclusive products, met prospective Consultants, and understand the fit for our type of artwork and style of business. While there, we met several other vendors, including Consultants from competitor direct-sales companies. The team returned very enthusiastic, and we opened an e-commerce website less than a month later. Our intention was to spend more time familiarizing ourselves with this wonderful market and those dedicated to craft.
I'm always a proponent of doing things right, even if it means taking more time: we worked with in-country shipping and organizational experts to determine the best ways to conduct business both now and in the long term, and we gained the knowledge we needed about currency, regulatory issues, advertising, and more. Again, we were just taking our time for when the opportunity was right.
Interestingly, opportunity knocked just a few short weeks ago—or should I say that it rang? I received a call from someone in the former Creative Memories Australasia company, whose business had moved into liquidation as a result of the its US-parent company's difficulties. We learned about the plight of the Consultants of that company in Australia and New Zealand, who were quite literally left without a home with little warning. Within a few short days, I learned more about their unfortunate situation, and they shared with us their strong desire to make Close To My Heart their new home. I can't even tell you how humbling it was.
The intervening weeks have involved long, global conference calls and flurries of e-mails and legal documents, but they have also involved the formation of some of the most powerful connections and instant friendships I can imagine. A few of the organization's top leaders flew to Utah and met with our executive team and the feeling was one of pure alignment, a desire to help each other succeed, and quite a bit of urgency to move quickly. And quick it was, thanks in great part to the preparation work we had already done—without even knowing it would be needed! The entire relationship has fallen into place so smoothly and surely that I have no doubt about its purpose or its future.
If you are a former Creative Memories Consultant from Australia or New Zealand, please allow me to share my deepest sorrow for the last few months of uncertainty you've experienced. While I am optimistic about our new opportunities together, that does not lessen my sympathies for what I know has been a difficult and turbulent time since the announcement of the closing of your former company. After nearly 30 years in this business, I have learned that sometimes the greatest trials can bring the richest blessings. I absolutely believe this to be true!
We know this new transition will bring many questions and we invite your questions but also your patience as we work to provide you every opportunity already available to our US and Canadian teams.
And if you are a reader from North America, we invite you to welcome our new friends from Australia and New Zealand! Feel free to share what you value about Close To My Heart in comments.
Our hearts are open with welcome. Our ears are open to listen and learn. And as I often say: no matter who you are, or why you have come to Close To My Heart, YOU ARE WELCOME HERE.