How often have you looked for something in your purse at night, only to not be able to find it? It seems it’s always in the last place you look once you have a light!

Hollis Molnar, owner of Austin Molnar USA, found herself having the same issue and using her signature light up lip gloss to find hidden items. She was also getting feedback from countless clients that were doing the same thing. So, she did what any entrepreneurial, driven woman would do! She developed and launched her patented light up system in her cosmetic bags. The bags were so well received that she has now started designing leather products here in Southeast Ohio.

Austin Molnar USA is based here in Albany, Ohio. Hollis designs beautiful leather handbags and has them produced here in the state. She is very hands-on from designing the patterns, to checking every purse for quality and delivering them to her eager customers. They are produced in small batches which means that every batch is unique.

LIGHTS has been working with Hollis and her team over the past few months to develop a strategic plan for her business and implementing a marketing plan so that clients outside of our region know about this gem. As a small business owner, Hollis wears many hats and has developed new skills with our support. This has set Austin Molnar USA up for success in order to efficiently process orders and get them out in time for the holidays.

Visit her website to check out the leather and vegan leather totes that are new this season!

About LIGHTS: Ohio University’s Innovation Center founded the LIGHTS (Leveraging Innovation Gateways and Hubs Toward Sustainability) program in 2016. LIGHTS’ Innovation Network catalyzes the creation of companies to create high-wage jobs, and attract greater private investment in the coal-impacted regions of Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky. The Appalachian Regional Commission generously f
unded the program because of its unique way of matching complex problems and opportunities facing corporations, communities, and individuals to a network of two strategically-placed Innovation Hubs and seven Gateways. New marketable products arise from these problems. The Gateways and Hubs are new business incubators and makerspaces serving a 28-county area.