GIO Clothing Co.
GIO Clothing Co.
NASHVILLE SINCE 2012
In poker, ‘grinding it out’ is a term that references extreme patience while putting in the work. “You can’t win every hand, so you have to sit there for hours just to make any kind of money,” Sean Deel says.
Sean became involved with poker casually, just playing games with friends. “Then I got hooked, just like everybody,” he says. “I got to a point where, going back to business, it was like, hey, don’t gamble, treat this as a business as well. I never gamble at the table,” he continues. “I don’t put in my chips unless I know that I have the best.”
Poker teaches incredible mental stamina. “Patience is really important at the poker table,” he says. “When that comes to grinding someone down, like grinding them out to where they start getting tired – it’s called being put on tilt – and they start making stupid decisions and they bluff out their whole money and their mindset, too.”
When Sean isn’t bringing GIO to life, he’s a professional drummer. “I moved here for music full time,” he says of his transition to Music City. He and business partner Jon Wysocki, who was the long-time drummer for Staind, both came to Nashville to play.
“I think any successful entrepreneur has multiple streams of revenue,” Sean says. He sees distinct parallels between his music and clothing line pursuits. “A lot of people don’t know how to treat music as a business,” he says. “My experience in running my own business is like, well, if I applied this to my music career, maybe we’ll see some more success.”
Poker, music, and business all require a common trait: tenacity. Sean has it in spades. “I went online and just YouTubed corporate videos to all these companies, and finally the Rue 21 video came up,” he shares. “It went through all the employees and finally it came up, so and so, men’s top buyer.” Normally, people at that level are unreachable via cold call, but Sean wasn’t deterred. “I just kind of snaked my way in by calling the corporate number and saying, ‘Hey, this person called me, I’m returning her call, I keep getting disconnected,’ so they just put me right through,” he says. The woman called him back within five minutes; she was on vacation, but loved the message he’d left. GIO clothing ended up doing two style runs with them, which they sold through.
Aside from Rue 21, GIO has deals with boutiques in Nashville and is in the works with some larger national partnerships. If you head to Broadway on any given night, you’ll probably see someone sporting the brand. “Having some of the success that we’ve had, and then a lot of the failures as well, I wouldn’t trade any of them,” Sean says. “It’s all put us where we are today.”