Jennifer and Eros Corpus were looking to go into business together for sometime, and after years of researching, the two finally opened their first store together in December.
The White Plains married couple opened a Batteries Plus Bulbs store in White Plains on Dec. 10. While there are more than 525 locations in 46 states, and Puerto Rico, the White Plains store, located at 300 Tarrytown Ave., is the first to open in the Hudson Valley.
“We looked around at all different types of businesses,” Eros Corpus said. “We thought about opening a restaurant, we looked at everything. When we found Batteries Plus Bulbs, we knew we found the right business. We just felt that Batteries Plus Bulbs was really it’s own kind of store. It has a really special niche. Everyone uses batteries and lightbulbs.”
And that’s precisely what the store sells. The location is covered with all different kinds of batteries, from your standard AA and AAAs to cell phone batteries, laptop batteries, camcorder batteries, motorcycle batteries, car batteries, ATV batteries and more. They also carry a wide range of lightbulbs, from fluorescents to incandescent to LED and plenty more. They also sell flashlights.
“The LED bulbs are really the way of the future,” Eros Corpus said. “They might be a bit pricier than what people are used to paying for lightbulbs, but it’s going to pay off because they last longer and are more efficient.”
He added that the store is running a rebate program for people who purchase LED bulbs where they can get $7 back on their purchase for up to 10 bulbs during the month of February.
While they are part of a very large chain of stores, Corpus said that he and his wife run the store and have five employees.
“We have a very knowledgeable team here,” he said. “If you came in onetime and them came back and wanted the same person to help you, there’s a good chance that same person will be around since we have a small staff. We’re trying to really build relationships with the customers. We already have gotten a few repeat customers.”
The store also offers battery recycling for free with any kinds of batteries. They’ll also do free tests on batteries to see if customers actually need to purchase new batteries before advising them on whether or not to buy.
Being part of a large chain also has its advantages. Batteries Plus Bulbs have some exclusive items that now on sale in the White Plains store. Last year, Batteries Plus entered into an agreement with Duracell Procell as the exclusive retailer for the Duracell Procell brand. This includes the sale of various kinds of batteries, including automotive, and lightbulbs.
Also an exclusive at the White Plains location is the SWITCH LED lightbulb, which was awarded the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show’s Innovations Award, 2012 Architectural Product Innovation Award and 2012 Popular Science Best of What’s New award. The SWITCH bulb is billed as the LED replacement for incandescent light bulbs. According to SWITCH’s website, the only locations to get the bulbs in New York, and many other states, are at Batteries Plus stores.
In addition to offering exclusives, Corpus thinks his understanding of the region could help his business grow. He graduated from White Plains High School in 1994, volunteered with Meals on Wheels and with the Fairview Fire Department. Before opening the store he worked in real estate for 10 years. His wife, Jennifer, grew up in Queens and has a master’s in business from Pace University. She also works as a software consultant.
Batteries Plus Bulbs is located at 300 Tarrytown Ave., White Plains. It is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The phone number is 914-997-9400.While the two met here in America, they were both born in Manila in the Philippines. Eros moved to America when he was in sixth grade.
“There were obviously a lot of challenges in trying to open our store, but so far it feels pretty great,” Eros Corpus said. “It’s been a lot of work. It’s kind of like the American dream.”