Wendy Foster
Wendy Foster

In the season finale of “The Profit,” Marcus Lemonis visits the fashion designer behind Manhattan-based Susana Monaco, a women’s clothing company. According to the episode description, the owner has allowed her family and co-workers to overpower her and if she cannot overcome, the business’s entire future may be in jeopardy.

Looking to grow his fashion business, Lemonis pays Monaco a visit, first greeted by Anna, the VP of Operations. Monaco tells Lemonis that she likes to be more behind-the-scenes and he can tell. He notes that Anna is acting more dominant, despite being an employee and not the owner.

Touring their showroom, he is then struck by the inconsistency with their line regarding fabrics and designs. They had to cut back after the Recession, now bringing in margins of less than 50 percent. The clothing items are made at her father’s manufacturing building, however, Monaco never visits the location given the tension with her brothers. Their biggest year saw $13 million in sales.

Anna also informs Lemonis that she wants to be an equal partner in the business, despite already making more than the owner. Lemonis is concerned given that she and Monaco’s brothers all want a piece of the company. Lemonis questions Monaco’s rationalization behind allowing Anna to act the way she does and she says there are “mixed feelings” regarding the issues.

Visiting the manufacturing space, Lemonis meets Monaco’s father, however, the brothers do not show up given that two-thirds of the business has not been gifted to them. They will not meet with Lemonis unless they are given equity in the company. He is also worried about the amount of extra inventory that was created as a result of unclear strategies and focus.

After reviewing their expenses and debts, Lemonis offers $600,000 for 50 percent equity. She wants to know how Anna will be involved, but Lemonis quickly shoots down the idea of Anna becoming a partner simply because she feels “entitled.” Ultimately, she accepts.

Lemonis hopes to cut the inventory that doesn’t sell and create new ways for retailers to purchase inventory in order to reduce inefficiencies in the process. He challenges them to pick the top 100 sellers, however, Anna quickly steps outside for not feeling recognized. Lemonis tells Monaco she needs to have a backbone when dealing with Anna and to allow her to deal with her own issues. Confronting Anna, Lemonis tells her that her behavior is “unacceptable,” but encourages everyone to stick together in order to move forward.

They ended up only choosing 70 bestsellers given that Monaco and Anna were not talking and ultimately build up a collection of products. They also seek out new fabrics, however, Anna quickly says that many are too expensive. Monaco becomes discouraged given the fact that her visions and focus are always shifting. Lemonis encourages Monaco to “design what you love” by using the fabrics she needs.

At their sample sale, Monaco is put front and center by interacting with potential customers, which is far outside of her comfort zone. Lemonis encourages her to display the pride that she has in her work, which results in much more interaction.

Their finalized core products are then presented, resulting in a fashion show to present their new spring collection to magazine writers and fashion journalists. Anna says she feels as though Monaco cannot fully express herself, however, Monaco pushes back while Lemonis encourages Anna to be more supportive. Monaco decides that if there is no change in Anna’s attitude, they will part ways.

At the fashion show, their spring line is presented to bloggers, editors and writers from Vanity Fair, Allure and more. He hopes the show will allow for not only the clothes to create a buzz and be put on display, but for Monaco herself to find new success from it.

Ultimately, Lemonis helps revive the business through the new core products, in addition to strengthening the relationship with her brothers. Lemonis believes that “sky’s the limit” for Monaco and her business going forward.

Social Media Reacts to Susana Monaco’s Appearance on “The Profit”

What do you think of the way Susana Monaco handled herself? What were your thoughts on Anna? Sound off in the comments section below!

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