After 10 years in business, The Rug Rack has consolidated its locations while expanding the square footage and inventory. Dane Wacaser, who co-owns the business along with his son, Matt Wacaser, said they decided to streamline operations and reduce overhead by closing locations in Bloomington and Peoria and leaving White Oaks Mall.
Wacaser said The Rug Rack had been located in the mall since opening nearly a decade ago, but a combination of factors led to the decision to leave. “You go back and look at numbers, and when Bergner’s closed it had a big impact on us,” he said. “Now we’re getting it all under one roof and cutting expenses.”
In July 2019, the Wacasers purchased Persian Rug Center and Murphy Rug & Furniture Cleaners from Kirk Jefferis, a commercial real estate broker based out of Springfield. Jefferis had originally been a landlord for the two businesses, who moved into a building he owned at 2222 S. Sixth St. in 2017.
“I bought the building and made modifications to accommodate them when they were forced to move because of the Ash Street underpass work,” explained Jefferis.
The following year, when Michael Myerscough decided to sell the business that his family had started in the 1960s, Jefferies bought the company and operated it himself for another year before selling to the Wacasers.
Wacaser said the acquisition almost doubled the company’s inventory, and he estimates the business now has 1,000-1,500 rugs in stock. “There were a lot of Persian rugs in here when we bought the building, and I would guess this is the largest inventory in the state, even including the Chicago area.”
The move also significantly increased the footprint of the store. Wacaser said the Sixth Street location has 9,000 square feet with about 6,000 square feet devoted to retail. The company also offers cleaning services and has a third employee who handles rug repairs.
“We have the space now to put everything in,” said Wacaser.