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You’ve Got Mail? Better ensure that you’ve got Mango!

SHOPGIRL: I go online, and my breath catches in my chest until I hear three little words: You've got mail.

Joe Fox smiled the broadest smile and started to compose his email back to Kathleen Kelly.

Of course, she didn’t know who he was, NY152 could be anyone in this huge city, couldn’t it?

“Imagine how Kathleen will feel when she finds out that it’s mean old Joe Fox who’s trying to put her out of business…” he muttered.

SHOPGIRL: People are always telling you that change is a good thing. But all they're really saying is that something you didn't want to happen at all... has happened. My store is closing this week. I own a store; did I ever tell you that?

Joe looked down at the keyboard and felt miserable.

SHOPGIRL: It's a lovely store, and in a week, it will be something really depressing…

He stopped reading.

How could he be doing that to her? How could he stop this from happening? The Shop Around The Corner was a New York institution, somewhere generations of children had discovered the joy of books and reading.

It was also her mother’s store. How could she ever forgive him?

He’d taken her flowers when she had a cold, bumped into her so many times at the market on a Saturday, told her he wanted to be her friend.

He’d even taken to calling Mr 152 a serial killer, said he’d have to be lifted out of his apartment by a crane, doing everything he could to make her like the online version of himself less than the real version who went for coffee with her and listened to her tell him how much she loved NY152.

Now, as he walked nervously to the gardens to meet her as NY152, his dog ran ahead of him. Kathleen looked up and saw him.

“I hoped it was you,” she said, smiling.

“I hoped you would,” Joe thought, smiling back at her.


Six months later, Kathleen had finished her children’s book and Joe couldn’t wait for it to be on the shelves of his Fox’s Books stores.

He smiled and let himself daydream about a book launch with a signing, a reading with lots and lots of children.

His assistant knocked on the door.

“Your fiancée called to say you’re going out to dinner with her friends at 8pm, and not to forget.”

“Oh, I won’t forget,” Joe said, smiling.

“Andy, how are we doing on tracking down all the contracts for the new stores we’re opening, all the documentation we need to make sure we abide by the city regulations and codes?”

Andy shook his head.

“It’s going very slowly. There are documents that have gone missing, others that still need to be signed…it’s a nightmare. And we have Black Friday fast approaching.”

Joe sighed.

“Wouldn’t it be great if we could find a solution the same way I found a fiancée?”

Andy frowned.

“What do you mean, Mr Fox?”

“Online, Andy, online! If all those documents could be stored on a centralised computer system and accessed from any store we like – from Manhattan to Queens, or even our new store in Boston!”

“That does sound amazing, Mr Fox, especially if we could get ride of all the paperwork hanging around our offices. We’d have so much space!”

Joe smiled.

“I know, Andy. Space for more books!”

As Andy closed the door, Joe began to doodle on a notepad in front of him.

“A central server somewhere secure where lots of businesses could store their information, links to all the computers without the need for disks, and a faster way to communicate than a dial-up modem…I can’t wait for the 21st Century!

“Now, what could we call it…something happy that makes the future bright…How about Mango?”

Joe feared he might get carried away with his latest idea and logged into AOL to send Kathleen a message. A few miles away, Shopgirl looked up from her notepad and smiled when she heard the familiar signal.

“You’ve Got Mail,” the screen said.

Find out how online compliance software like Mango benefits your retail business. Book a free demonstration which will be delivered via Zoom. We can help you achieve the ISOs your stores need, too. Call Penarth Management on 029 2070 3328 or email

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