Carrie Rengers

Art business expands

Eight years after starting as a home-based business, has just moved into its own 5,000-square-foot building at 1401 S. Mosley. David Sasson's company had a couple of smaller leased spaces on North Rock Road, but he wanted his own place.

"When you're subleasing, you're losing your identity," Sasson says.

Sasson, his wife, Stacy , and partner Amit Yaari started the business in 2002. They got the idea to sell reproductions of famous artists' paintings from David Sasson's brother, Amitai Sasson , in Israel.

At the time, David Sasson was working with several companies that did a lot of business online, which convinced him to make OverstockArt an online company.

Sasson says when a customer from anywhere in the world places an order, his goal is to ship it immediately. He needs more space to do that.

"We felt like for more growth, we needed more space," Sasson says. "When you get cramped, you get inefficient."

He says the company is on track to double its business this year and then again next year.

"We've been growing nicely."

The company is now diversifying, too.

Sasson is in the process of starting to sell original art.

"The idea of that site is to offer emerging artists the opportunity to sell their art to the public directly," he says.

"We're still tweaking it, but we have high expectations for that website."

There are other things he's working on as well.

"We are also looking at a number of different product lines that will be completely separate," Sasson says.

That could be wall clocks, statues or wood carvings from Africa.

"That is in the baby stages," Sasson says.

For now, all of his products come from China.

Currently, he has 14 employees — six here, his brother in Israel and the rest in China.

"I'm planning on adding employees in the United States," Sasson says.

He plans three this year in sales and production.

"As you grow, you're adding employees (and) it's really critical to have the right kind of culture," Sasson says.

That's part of why he wanted his company to have its own space.

"We felt like that was an important move."

Clifton closes for now

Earlier this year, Jo Zakas announced she wants to find someone to buy or lease her Clifton Wine and Jazz bar.

She hasn't found that someone, so she's closed — for now.

Zakas, who owns the Clifton Square development at 3700 E. Douglas, didn't intend for last Saturday night to be her final regular night in business. That's what it turned out to be, though.

On July 9 at 7 p.m., Zakas will have a going-away party of sorts to use up remaining food and liquor. For a $10 cover, which will go to a charity, customers can have free food and discounted drinks.

Zakas also will still book private parties at the venue while she continues to look for a new owner.

She says it's a turnkey operation, where everything is ready to go for a new owner.

"I wish I could have found a place like that that had everything done," Zakas says.

The business will be closed until fall unless someone buys it before then.

"I may have to try again, I don't know," Zakas says.

She then reconsiders.

"No," Zakas says confidently, "someone's coming along."

Andover calling

Z Wireless is bringing another Verizon Wireless store to the greater Wichita area, this time in Andover.

"We're really excited to be in the Andover area," says Craig Clark , regional manager for Z Wireless' Kansas and Missouri Markets. "It's going to be a good market."

The new store is going in 1,800 square feet at 229 N. Andover Road.

Z Wireless has 70 stores throughout the Midwest, including five in Wichita and a new one in Haysville.

The Andover store will carry a full line of Verizon products and services and will accept bill payments and handle service issues.

Jeff Walenta and Troy Farha of Grubb & Ellis/Martens Commercial Group handled the deal.

You don't say

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Kris Schindler of Start-Thinking on how business seems to be thriving in Delano