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Thread: Store idea

  1. #1
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Store idea

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I have a dream...

    Open a little shop in a suburban shopping complex (not a big westfield) that sells predominantly takeaway coffee, tea, the odd slice, muffins, etc. - so not a cafe but a place that had a reputation for great coffee and that changed consistently so that people could come in and find new things from time to time. Having a range of machines, roasted beans, some great chocolates, and maybe selling a different coffee for the takeaways every week. Maybe having closed sundays for coffee appreciation classes by 2mcm, etc.

    I know I dont have the expertise, but certainly have the passion. Maybe some of our sponsors might be interested in sharing space? eg. Pullman tampers on the shelf, next to the Pressos, and of course a selection of Andys CoffeeSnobs Brown...you get the idea.

    Do you think this would work?

  2. #2
    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Stock on consignment is a concept that works really well if the

    store manager:
    a. keeps great records.
    b. looks after the stock.
    c. sends regular statements (and payments)
    d. doesnt expect too much margin.

    supplier:
    a. provides quality equipment
    b. manages stock levels
    c. trusts the store manager!
    d. doesnt expect to much margin.

    I came across a hand craft store in Auckland a few years ago called... Craft World.. not too subtle but the whole of the stock was on consignment and the "business" provided registers, layby, security etc. in return for a percentage of sale. This place was HUGE and full of tourists/shoppers so Im sure everyone was winning.

    As for the merits of opening a cafe/coffee shop in the "burbs" Ill let someone else with experiance answer that.


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    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Put it in a business plan and have it to my lawyers by the end of the month and Ill tell you if it will fly.

    Seriously, there are some phrases in your post that dont really go with the notion of a going concern.

    Not really a cafe - what is it then?
    Reputation for great coffee that changed consistently - Change reputation or coffee?
    Range of machines - How many? Who pays for them? Plumbed in multi groups or stand alones that require their own power and 30 minute warm-up?
    Roasted beans - On site? Or just reselling?

    Will it work? Depends. You really do need a plan. Passion without a plan is what causes most small businesses (and some big) to fold.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Thanks Andy and fatboy - this will evole over the next few weeks.

    in the meantime just to clarify:
    Not a cafe - its a coffee shop
    Rep for great coffee and change - try a different coffee every week...not the same ol blend
    Machine range - Andy answered that and home machines stand alones only
    Definitely reselling Andys beans

    I know I need a business plan...was self-employed in construction industry for almost 20 years - at the moment Im looking for feedback on a concept and appreciate peoples use of imagination/suggestions.

  5. #5
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    Re: Store idea

    Location, location, location - where in particular are you thinking of? You need to first choose your area, somewhere that people will come to you because they like your idea. Then you need to find the one place in that area that everyone else walks past.

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    Re: Store idea

    Hi Dennis,

    Renzo and I had a similar dream, and we actually made it come true..(without the muffins & chocolate part that is..)

    In our little coffee dream world, we rotate a blend every day for our take always, and we didnt stop there: we created a workshop where we repair sick machines, we sell spare parts for all the different brands, we have "closed Saturdays" with Hazel De Los Reyes as our Queen in reign, and we even made a kids world within our dream world: where little ones gets entertained by fairies when Mom & Dad learn how to make coffees.....

    You see, we called it: "Di Bartoli Coffee Centre". And because were having so much fun running it, why not looking for a partenr to open our second store with and share that fun? ;)

    Here is an idea for you...


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    Re: Store idea

    Heck sounds too good to be true. Now if only such a place felt like opening in WA. Much rather work there than in a variety store or as a fill-in gardener, courier driver or labourer, which are my options at the moment :(.

    Greg dreams of Di Bartoli WA Inc phile

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Pullman link=1173936253/0#6 date=1173938813
    Greg dreams of Di Bartoli WA Inc phile
    Greg,

    I reckon that would be a fantastic idea..... and there is a very real need for a Di Bartoli type operation here in Perth (we really are starved for great coffee equipment retailers as Im sure you know)....

    And I must admit Im VERY impressed by Renzos style of operation..... hes just a little too far East!! :(

    Food for thought Id say Greg..... and team it up with Andys Brown beans (maybe even some greens ;)), your tampers......

    You could have roasting sessions.... to show people how easy it is to roast your own (Im sure a few friendly Snobs here would help)..... Snob meeting place (even BeanBay collection point to get more customers through the door)....... my mind is going crazy at the possibilities!

    Mmmmm definitely worth thinking about. :) :)

  9. #9
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Di Bartoli link=1173936253/0#5 date=1173938280
    Hi Dennis,

    Renzo and I had a similar dream, and we actually made it come true..(without the muffins & chocolate part that is..)

    In our little coffee dream world, we rotate a blend every day for our take always, and we didnt stop there: we created a workshop where we repair sick machines, we sell spare parts for all the different brands, we have "closed Saturdays" with Hazel De Los Reyes as our Queen in reign, and we even made a kids world within our dream world: where little ones gets entertained by fairies when Mom & Dad learn how to make coffees.....

    You see, we called it: "Di Bartoli Coffee Centre". And because were having so much fun running it, why not looking for a partenr to open our second store with and share that fun? ;)

    Here is an idea for you...
    Oh, I think we need to meet! Perhaps this Saturday at your store?

  10. #10
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    From acorns grow the big things. *Could be the start of a new WA enterprise here. *

    But Id try to avoid meeting Brian Burke for a leg up.

    --Robusto




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    Re: Store idea

    I did think that when I mentioned Di Bartoli WA Inc - intended as a composite phrase, definitely not one to be split down the middle! :o Sounds a great idea but a big take-on... :-/

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Pullman link=1173936253/0#10 date=1173946666
    Sounds a great idea but a big take-on...
    Yep, it is a big take-on....... but potentially also could generate a big return......

    Renzo and "partner" could provide some seriously needed services over here..... and with your background and interest.... and your passion for coffee.....

    And Robusto is correct...... Just look what that little acorn turns into!

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    Re: Store idea

    Oh you evil people! Actually Ive thought of something like that in the past but ideally with a shopfront roastery like Simply Coffee. There are heaps of coffee shops over here, not many good ones admittedly, but then while I have the passion I hardly have any experience. Sounds like a similar position to Dennis.

    Now with JavaB as a consultant... ;) Who knows how much it costs to get a shop going though...

  14. #14
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Ah, the aroma of roasting coffee will be a great drawcard (environment protection authority and council regulations permitting).

    Perhaps a slightly rustic look, coffee beans in sacks, a couple of old chunky iron weighing scales for decor. Have a latte while your beans are roasted....

    JavaB instructing the customer in how to get the optimum performance from the newest HX model on sale "Trust me, Im a Coffeesnob"....

    And the media coverage: "How an internet snob post became Perths latest cafe culture reality".

    Go for it.

    --Robusto

  15. #15
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    get to the back of the line boys!

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    Re: Store idea

    Greg I was going to say that except for the roaster and that they are not in a shopping centre but just outside the CBD, Dennis idea sounds like Simply Coffee.
    Good luck to both of you if you give it a go.

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    Re: Store idea

    Sorry Den, not stealing your idea and even if I was its across the country. Thats twice Ive trodden on your toes, sorry! :(

    Grey, yep thats what I thought when I read the opening post and indeed was one idea I had a few months before shifting. Thats why I jumped on it when I saw it suggested.

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    Re: Store idea

    The only thing Di Bartoli is missing is food. Im partial to lemon biscuits ;)

  19. #19
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Viviane link=1173936253/0#4 date=1173938236
    Location, location, location - where in particular are you thinking of? You need to first choose your area, somewhere that people will come to you because they like your idea. Then you need to find the one place in that area that everyone else walks past.
    Sylvania - Southgate Shopping Centre has a Coles, Woolies, KMart, clothing stores, couple of cafes, and of course hairdressers. Anglo area, midlle class, nouveau riche/affluent...or similar

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    Re: Store idea

    How many cafes are there already? Youll want to be taking a lot of the coffee trade. I know you plan to sell machines, coffee beans etc, but never underestimate the profit margin on a cup of coffee. Or biscotti. :)

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis link=1173936253/0#14 date=1173949604
    get to the back of the line boys!
    No such thing mate ;). When it comes to Business.... Its a matter of who strikes while the irons hot - with passion, entrepreneurship and sound business skills thatll make the idea work and succeed through the passage of time.

    Mal.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Pullman link=1173936253/15#16 date=1173954611
    Sorry Den, not stealing your idea and even if I was its across the country. Thats twice Ive trodden on your toes, sorry! :(

    Grey, yep thats what I thought when I read the opening post and indeed was one idea I had a few months before shifting. Thats why I jumped on it when I saw it suggested.
    Greg, I was only joking - I think it would be great to replicate a model that has a record of success.

    Mal - I agree with you totally - my entrepreneurship is witnessed by creating this thread; my sound business skills are witnessed by successfully having owned/operated other businesses and being selective about what I post here; hot iron - am making arrangements to be there tomorrow!

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    Re: Store idea

    Dennis, youre welcome to drop by tomorrow anytime between 10am-4pm, and get a taste of your "dream store"...

    check http://www.dibartoli.com.au/contact_us.html for directions.

  24. #24
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Di Bartoli link=1173936253/15#22 date=1173999399
    Dennis, youre welcome to drop by tomorrow anytime between 10am-4pm, and get a taste of your "dream store"...

    check http://www.dibartoli.com.au/contact_us.html for directions.
    Thankyou Renzo and Ofra - Im looking forward to meeting both of you! :)

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    Re: Store idea

    Greg - if coffee machines are part of the equation then the strip along the freeway between Stirling and Joondalup might be good - Supreme are south east, theres a couple of places in Freo one in malaga but nothing along the North West corridor of any consequence. Ive often thought of doing the same myself but I like my job too much to leave it.

    I do know there is a need, particularly for a place that sells QUALITY coffee machines, coffee and extras.

    And Dennis - good luck over your side of the country too mate.

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    Re: Store idea

    why not the bigger shopping centre like a westfield? There is a T2 shop at the westfield near me which seems to be doing good. Its a similar setup just with tea not coffee.

  27. #27
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by jimmyb link=1173936253/15#25 date=1174031941
    why not the bigger shopping centre like a westfield? There is a T2 shop at the westfield near me which seems to be doing good. Its a similar setup just with tea not coffee.
    Josh, while Westfield obviously has great exposure, in my view it comes at a huge price - high rent, management dictating hours, promotions, etc. and after all that, they want a slice of the till as well. While I believe passing trade will get this type of store off the ground, word of mouth and reputation will be the big draw cards that make it sustainable.

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    Re: Store idea

    I think it is important to do your homework before you outlay any hard dollars.

    I had a look at the Coffee Emporium at Westfields Parramatta Sydney (also at Blacktown and Liverpool).

    Very impressive and great service and coffee.

    They would have to sell a lot of three dollar coffees to pay back the (estimated) four hundred grand for the shop fitout and the thousand a week rent to Westfields.

    The fact there is a Michels patisserie 20 metres from their counter is also a minus.

    Do ya homework first I say!

    jeff

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    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Westfields demand a lot, some of which has already been stated.
    Another one is regular refits of the store all at your cost.

    Di Bartoli are just outside a HUGE Westfield and it doesnt seem to be harming them.
    And they are masters of their own destiny (faber est quisque suae fortunae).

  30. #30
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Dennis, somewhat off topic here.... I dont know whether this is due to my computer settings both at work and home, but you avatar doesnt show.

    All I see is the outline of a rectangle where the avatar should go. (Perhaps youre hiding something from us!)

    --Robusto

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    Re: Store idea

    they take a % of your takings at westfield? Thats crazy.
    I thought it would be more than $1000 per week rent though.

    I think the shop is a great idea, I would like one up here in Brisbane. Its just really hard to get a good coffee in a big shopping centre.

  32. #32
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    Re: Store idea

    Having experienced shopping centre management (both Gandel and AMP), all I can say is never again....

    The take of a % of takings is in most rental agreements, but normally kicks in at high $$...Nevertheless, they really dont have any way of knowing what your takings are- you can tell them what you like within reason.

    Many dont realise that is when major changes happen- things like rebuilding, reconfiguration etc, your passing trade may drop off to nothing and its a case of too bad, sucker. A good case study of this at Westfield Doncaster at the moment. Most of the carpark is closed due to building and those trying to make a buck are bleeding with little if any support from the landlord.

    In my experience, there were automatic 5% increases in rent on an annual basis and at the end of the lease, we went from 80k to circa 100k PA. There was minimal negotiation- just the statement that we could leave if we didnt like it as they had people interested in the site...At that point, rent represented almost 20% of takings in a very busy cafe. We were slaves to the landlord sometimes breaking even, sometimes making a loss...

    There are also the compulsory contributions to things such as marketing funds etc...whether or not you receive any benefit. Stay away from shopping centres!

  33. #33
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by robusto link=1173936253/15#29 date=1174100296
    Dennis, somewhat off topic here.... I dont know whether this is due to my computer settings both at work and home, but you avatar doesnt show.

    All I see is the outline of a rectangle where the avatar should go. (Perhaps youre hiding something from us!)

    --Robusto
    it comes and goes Robusto - Im still trying to figure out why!

  34. #34
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Thought Id let you all know that I visited Ofra and Renzo today at their Di Bartoli Coffee Centre and spent a couple of hours there. It was a somewhat strange sensation, almost like de ja vous, as the store is the one in my dream.

    If you havent had the opportunity to meet Ofra and Renzo, take the time to go out to Bondi Junction and meet them - they are both wonderful people who not only share your passion for coffee and living their dream, but also very willing to share their valuable knowledge and experience. In a nutshell (or coffee cherry) these two deserve to succeed and deserve our support.

    And Ofra, thanks for the espresso - its so rare these days to get one as good as the one I make at home ;) ;D

  35. #35
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Same here Dennis.
    If I go directly to the url and back to CS it appears but Im not sure how long it stays.
    Probably only for the session of the duration.

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    Re: Store idea

    So what was the result? Is Di Bartoli v2 going to fly??? :)

  37. #37
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Pullman link=1173936253/30#35 date=1174106023
    So what was the result? Is Di Bartoli v2 going to fly??? :)

    Im sure the idea will fly Greg - I just dont know when, where and with whom at the moment. I have some serious thinking to do!

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    Re: Store idea

    Dennis,

    Thanks for the time spent in our store and for your kind words, shared with others.

    We are looking to share a similar experience with all other sponsors and CS members who can spare a moment dropping by the store and giving us their feedback, sharing their wishful thinking, and planting the seeds for a better, improved, overhaul coffee experience.

    As we said, the road is still a long one to go, and we are in a learning curve ourselves, any support, suggestions or contribution is very much appreciated. As long as we dont forget to enjoy the journey as we go along...

    Looking forward to further contribute to any “store dream” coming true…

    P:S: watch out Queenslanders, Brisbane store coming soon… *;)

    Ofra & Renzo

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by Di Bartoli link=1173936253/30#37 date=1174108058
    Dennis,

    P:S: watch out Queenslanders, Brisbane store coming soon… ;)

    really? how far into it are you?

    email me if its better - josh@shinystudios.com


  40. #40
    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Jimmyb, your avatar doesnt appear either, just the border.

    --Robusto

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by robusto link=1173936253/30#39 date=1174112814
    Jimmyb, your avatar doesnt appear either, just the border.

    --Robusto
    that would be cause ive updated my website (finally), and had to move files around. I think my avatar got put in a different folder. Ill fix it up

    I should also say why I was interested in the Brisbane store,

    Ive just moved up to Brisbane this year and am not working full time at the moment, before the move i managed a joinery shop in NSW.
    Ive been getting into coffee more and more over the past few years and would be interested in helping setup shop if you are not to far into it.
    Also working as a freelance graphic designer at the moment.

  42. #42
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Josh, suggest you pm Ofra and Renzo

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    Re: Store idea

    Dennis, suggest you PM Josh on how to fix your avatar. ;) ;D

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    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    One down, one to go.

    --Robusto

  45. #45
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    Re: Store idea

    My husband and I have been dreaming and scheming about getting into the cafe scene, probably once our little ones head to school. As we were talking about it yesterday, I had a bit of an idea.

    What about a CS franchise of cafes? Supplied with fresh roasted beans by a couple of strategically located CS Brown Roasterys- quality guaranteed :) Snobs all over the country setting up cafes to take on *$ et al. and raising the standards of coffee around the nation...

    Itd be a huge, massive, enormous undertaking I guess, but hey, itd be exciting to see happen...

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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by mwatt link=1173936253/30#44 date=1174391979
    My husband and I have been dreaming and scheming about getting into the cafe scene, probably once our little ones head to school. As we were talking about it yesterday, I had a bit of an idea.

    What about a CS franchise of cafes? Supplied with fresh roasted beans by a couple of strategically located CS Brown Roasterys- quality guaranteed :) Snobs all over the country setting up cafes to take on *$ et al. and raising the standards of coffee around the nation...

    Itd be a huge, massive, enormous undertaking I guess, but hey, itd be exciting to see happen...
    Sounds like a dream worth following. I drank at Gloria Jeans yesterday and was suitably unimpressed with the quality of my coffee (more like grey water than coffee actually). If I can make a coffee at home that tastes better (much better!) than a Multi-national franchisee (and Im a beginner at this), then a franchise run by devoted coffee snobs can only be a good thing :) Passion will take a business further than the desire for the almighty $$ alone (IMHO).

    Or maybe I just got the barista on a bad day :-/

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    Re: Store idea

    lost me at franchise, it just seams like as soon as you go that way its all about the money.

    What your saying could also be taken a different way to my first thought though.

  48. #48
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    Re: Store idea

    Quote Originally Posted by mwatt link=1173936253/30#44 date=1174391979
    My husband and I have been dreaming and scheming about getting into the cafe scene, probably once our little ones head to school. As we were talking about it yesterday, I had a bit of an idea.

    What about a CS franchise of cafes? Supplied with fresh roasted beans by a couple of strategically located CS Brown Roasterys- quality guaranteed :) Snobs all over the country setting up cafes to take on *$ et al. and raising the standards of coffee around the nation...

    Itd be a huge, massive, enormous undertaking I guess, but hey, itd be exciting to see happen...
    To all of those with their own small cafe pipe dream, all I can advise is tread VERY carefully. I see sea-changers every week at the academy with dreams of their own cafe.

    Many of these people imagine a busy cafe where they work hard and then empty the wheelbarrow of cash into the Ferrari each night and drive off into the sunset. I can assure you that its nothing like that.

    Imagine your weekly takings and then deduct:
    Food 25-30%
    Labour 25% (if you run a tight ship)
    GST an effective 9%
    Super- say 3%
    Rent- anywhere from 7-15%
    Insurances/Utilities etc say 8%
    Workcover 1%

    This assumes zero wastage of food (unrealistic)...

    Lets then throw in a franchise fee (not that Id ever enter into a franchise agreement) of say 8%...Hmm...no return...So...you work like a slave to attempt to reduce your labour costs so that you might make a few bucks...

    You are yet to cover penalty rates if applicable nor over award payments to a talented barista (which you will need...). The reality of this is that you have to sell a heck of a lot of coffee before you make a buck and its very likely that your money will do a whole lot better in shares or maybe even in the bank...

    Licence to print money- not likely ;)

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    Re: Store idea

    There is one other VERY important skill which any prospective Business owner must have...... and that is skill in running a business....

    There were lots of redundancies in the area I worked before my retirement..... and many organised early retirement based on the opportunity.....

    They took their redundancy money and lump sum super...... had great ideas on what they wanted to do, lots of enthusiasm and passion... and set up their business.....

    Before long they were back knocking on the door for a job - penniless and disillusioned.... they had made mistakes - too many mistakes (even simple things like not having enough money in the till/bank to pay their GST debt).

    So as Chris says above- the road to "glory" in business is neither smooth or easy.... and often ends in disaster if you havent got the appropriate skill set (and most with a real passion for a particular pursuit are blind to the reality of running a business, concentrating far too much in the area of their passion).......

  50. #50
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Store idea

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    I think this is very good advice Chris, especially from someone who has been there, done that. *I think recent figures show that out of the 100k business that open each year, 40% also close in their first year and if measured 5 years after opening, a whacking 77% have shut their doors.

    From my personal business experience, people get caught up in the dream and continue to live in that dream. *I dont think its impossible to realise your dream, though one should first recognise it for what it is, then do lots of homework, then do it all again!

    In NSW at least, there are Business Enterprise Centres (BECs) that can provide judicious advice to entrepreneurs and the service is the cheapest and probably the best assistance you will ever buy. *Im sure *there would be similar services in other States - ask your local Chamber of Commerce or just go to a business club.

    Oh, and btw, I made a decision not to go forward with the dream I started this thread with!



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