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KWBB CW10 South Texas :: News - Top Stories - Small business thrives off smiling faces

Small business thrives off smiling faces

NEDERLAND - By Justin Hinton, KFDM News


Fred Miller’s opened in 1919. Ninety-three years later, Chris Miller, the founder’s grandson is co-owner.


“I think Grandfather would be kind of shocked to see what it turned in to,” Miller said.


Hardware supplies and bicycles once adorned the store. Now, Christmas trees, books and baby toys cover the shop on Nederland Avenue.


Wagons and toys are just a few traces of what the store used to be, back when it was owned by Miller’s grandfather.


Chris Miller describes it as an eclectic department store. He said the store continues to evolve, but there have been a number of difficult moments.


“It’s not an easy road being in retail. It’s tough, especially for a small store, trying to compete with other chains and everything else cause this is totally different from the Walmarts and Targets and anything else,” he said.


A fire destroyed the store in 1974, but the family pulled together. Six years later, they opened a second store in Nederland, the one Chris operates. His brother operates the original store which moved to Groves.


“I think it's a lot of hard work and a lot of loyal customers and new customers. And a lot of honesty and integrity being in business is what keeps you alive, and I think that's what we've done for all these years,” Miller said.


He says seeing smiling customers is what it’s all about.

Small business thrives off smiling faces

Monday, February 18 2013, 04:15 PM CST
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