With the announcement that restrictions on salons and barbershops were lifted as of May 18 comes another piece of news from a locally grown high-end men’s grooming brand on the verge of expansion.
The Oxford Barber Co., currently operating out of The Saltbox retail collective at 1256 Pendleton St., announced in December its new flagship location under construction just around the corner. It has now also signed a lease for an additional shop. This one is located in the heart of Overbrook at 1633 E. North St. next to Shaw’s Pharmacy in the strip center that recently got a facelift when it came under new ownership. Both new locations are owned by an LLC managed by Harrison Horowitz, and the team of Rakan Draz and John Odom of Avison Young are handling the leasing for both.
The 1,308-square-foot space will provide enough room for a barbershop at the front, spa area in the back and gathering space for events and company meetings, says shop owner John Redgrave.
“A large percentage of people drive an hour to come to our shop,” he says, listing Spartanburg, Clemson and Simpsonville as examples.
Opening a shop closer to the east side of town will provide easier access for those clients, and future expansion into other surrounding markets is the ultimate goal, Redgrave says.
Just before South Carolina’s work or home order went into place, Oxford Barber Co. grew from four to nine barbers, and having retained all of them during the hiatus of service, the team will be split between the two locations when they are both open — Overbrook in June and The Village of West Greenville in late summer. As of this week, they are all operating out of The Saltbox while construction continues at both locations.
Redgrave says the main reason business expansion and employee retention were both possible is that the shop follows a W-2 employment model for its barbers rather than a contractor model as is industry standard. He says there are pros and cons of both, but being able to provide his staff stability during this time has confirmed his decision.
“We were one of the few that were able to benefit from the PPP funding,” he says. “Being set up with W-2 employees helped us have the paper trail to get the funding we needed.”