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Shoppers push retail sales up 0.7% in September

NEW YORK (AP) – Americans continued to spend at a solid clip in September even while facing sticker shock in grocery aisles, car lots...
LOCAL FLAVOR: Roger Lapierre is the founder, owner and key principal of Li’l General convenience stores. Lapierre started with one store in 1970 in Woonsocket and has evolved the business to six franchise locations throughout northern Rhode Island. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO

Local convenience store brand has staying power

The first night he came home after opening his first Li’l General store, having invested much of his money in the venture as a...
PAYING ATTENTION: Zahan Akbar, owner of Atwood Pharmacy Inc. in Johnston, says he will compete with corporate retail pharmacies by offering personalized service. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO

Pharmacy offers customers personalized service, free same-day delivery

Zahan Akbar opened a full-service pharmacy this year, Atwood Pharmacy Inc., knowing that personalized service for people taking medication would set him apart from...

Five Questions With: Michael Baker

Michael Baker | Owner, Rumford Pet Express 1. What impact has the pandemic had on the independent pet supply business? The American Pet Products...

Five Questions With: Frank Picozzi

5Q: Frank Picozzi | Mayor, city of Warwick 1. How has being a small-business owner prepared you for the role of mayor? Being a...

Garden City Center adds 8 retailers

CRANSTON – Garden City Center recently announced the addition of eight brands joining the shopping plaza, either through pop-up spaces or retail locations. Pop-up operations...
A NICE PAIRING: The Diamond Bar LLC, a custom design and retail jewelry store that sells engagement diamonds and has an in-store bar, is owned and run by Steve and Zhabrina Maniscalco. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO

Maniscalcos shine with new jewelry store

Buying a diamond doesn’t have to be an overwhelming experience. The Diamond Bar LLC, a newly opened retail jeweler in Providence, is adding cheer...
SERVICE-MINDED: Nicole O’Brien, pictured above, is owner of the artisan boutique Operation Made in Warwick that features handmade items created by veterans and their families, including flowers made of wood by veteran Jazmine Jackson, a Cranston native and Army National Guard veteran. / PBN PHOTO/MICHAEL SALERNO

An artisan shop forged by military experience

Nicole O’Brien knows how difficult it is for veterans to make the transition from military to civilian life. So, when she opened a retail...
LEVELING UP: JoEllen Fiorenzano, CEO and president of F.A.F. Inc. in Smithfield, has spent more than four decades at the fashion jewelry designer and supplier, working her way up from what started as a high school job to now leading the company for the past three years. / COURTESY F.A.F. INC.

Whether mentoring, collaborating, or supporting, Fiorenzano gives back in many ways

PBN 2021 Business Women Awards Industry Leader Creative Services: JoEllen Fiorenzano, F.A.F. Inc. JoEllen Fiorenzano, CEO and president of F.A.F. Inc. in Smithfield, wasn’t exactly born...
CURIOSITY WELCOMED: ­Priyadarshini Himatsingka, owner of pH Factor on Hope Street in Providence, doesn’t mind discussing her Indian roots with customers who ask about her background. / PBN PHOTO/RUPERT WHITELEY

Everybody’s Business: She runs shop with a worldly view

(Editor’s note: This is the ninth installment in a monthly series speaking with minority business owners and leaders. Each will be asked their views...

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