Hey RICHMOND!!!Do you love supporting LOCAL businesses and organizations?That's what I love MOST about my job. I’ve been in the commercial real estate and brokerage world for over 15 years. I get to help local businesses and organizations find a place to call home right here in Richmond. In fact, here are my TOP 5 Favorite Projects:#1) Flooring RVA.We helped find them a new showroom with more space AND we were able to help find a tenant to replace their previous lease so they could make a clean break.#2) The Summit (Scott’s Addition area).Such a great, action packed area of town where we were able to help long time friends sell two different properties at the same time.#3) Nomad Deli & Catering Company.Anthony and his family are proof that the American Dream is alive. They started this family owned business as tenants, but eventually bought their building and have continued a successful (and delicious) restaurant!#4) LUX ChurchThis is a great community minded organization that brought life back into a building that was over 130 years old and an area landmark.#5) Liberty Public HouseWhen Alexa told us about her dream concept of a restaurant inside a renovated, historical building, we knew we had just the right property for her! In fact, she moved all the way back to Richmond from the west coast to fulfill her dream of being a restaurant owner.
Posted by Sperity Real Estate Ventures on Tuesday, June 30, 2020
“Instead of finding a big ticket location, Sperity listened to my needs and found what I was looking for. I was never waiting on them for anything. They handled both parts of the transaction, which was incredible,” Doug said. “I was able to sit back and let them run with it.”
From the IBBA’s website: “A Certified Business Intermediary (CBI) is an experienced business broker who is committed to the highest level of professional development the industry has to offer and has ethical values aligned with the IBBA standards of professionalism. A CBI has the ability to objectively guide clients through the intricacies of the entire marketing and negotiation process of a business sale, resulting in successful transactions and satisfied clients.
A CBI offers the most experienced professional representation available during the process of selling or buying a business. Along with having undergone a specialized initial program of detailed training, a CBI is required to earn continuing education credits to maintain the credential.
When you want to work with the best intermediary to buy or sell a business, look for the CBI designation.”
There has been a lot of attention given to the recent closings of restaurants in the Richmond area. There have been a lot lately, no doubt — here is a list of closings this year from Richmond.com that they are keeping up-to-date as things change. Some of these have been big surprises to the community at large, but it is important to keep in mind a few things.
Not all businesses close (or are for sale) because of poor sales. There are a variety of reasons:
- personal issues (divorce, wanting to spend more time with children, need to take care of an elderly parent, the owner has an illness)
- the business strategy has changed (the owners no longer want to be in a particular area of town, the owners only want to operate where they own the building)
- the owners are absentee and have other full-time jobs that are suffering because of the demands of owning a restaurant
- the business is on track to make a profit but the owners have run out of operating capital
- the owner is burned out, having spent the last XX number of years in the same location
- the owners realize that the best time to sell is when business is booming — cash out while things are good and maximize the sales price
- poor money management — sales might be great, but if you don’t manage your money well then you won’t stay open for long
- the landlord isn’t willing to renew the lease — maybe they have a better offer from another prospective tenant
- the owner isn’t changing, but they are changing the concept
There is also the counterbalancing effect of new restaurants opening up. Karri Peifer, Editor and Food Writer at Richmond.com, has been keeping track:
— Karri Peifer (@KarriPeifer) October 12, 2012
Almost one year ago, we posted a story about the transitioning of ownership of one Richmond restaurant legacy, Mulligan’s Sports Grille. The past month (Tuesday, October 9, 2012, to be exact) has unfortunately brought us the end to this story — covered here by CBS6 and here by Richmond.com. The restaurant’s official statement from their website is posted here (click the photo to enlarge) –>
Another restaurant that has gotten a lot of press coverage for its closing is Cafe Diem, at the corner of Patterson Ave and N Sheppard St in the Museum District — and right beside our office at 604 N Sheppard St. Since our company is involved in the ownership and management of their building, and most of the commercial property in the area, the media turned to us for some insight.
NBC12 coverage of Cafe Diem closing (with video and a guest appearance from yours truly)
I think the press has done an excellent job with the coverage on this closing. It is often a touchy subject, not only for the restaurant owner(s) but the landlord, the restaurant employees, the loyal patrons, the restaurant vendors, and even the surrounding businesses.
In short, there are lots of reasons why restaurants close. Sure, times are tough all around and lots of people are cutting back on spending, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. If anything, if you enjoy a particular restaurant, be sure to visit it plenty and enjoy it while it’s here. It is fun to always look for the next big thing, but don’t forget about the old favorites either. — By the way, there are LOTS of new restaurants coming soon. Keep an eye out here for announcements!
Just two decades ago, sports bars weren’t very common. This is a community story for locals and sports fans, about one of Richmond’s first sports bars, the changing city landscape around VCU and the retirement of one well-respected business owner.
One Richmond bar scores big and creates a legacy
While the city hosts numerous restaurants and acclaimed cuisine, we also have an often overlooked local sports bar–not a big chain–that’s worthy of a boisterous hurrah.
Mulligans Sport’s Grille first swung open its doors in 1990 to reveal about 20 televisions inside–none of them flat screens–all broadcasting sports games and commentary.
Think about that novelty. The playing field for sports bars used to be fairly empty of any competition.
Harken back to the early 90s, if you can. The daily routine was sans internet, cable television was not a household standard–and it certainly did not supply the multiple sports networks available now. There was an audible welcome from sports fans–to the extent that the dream of three men multiplied into six restaurants.
The first store was so successful that by its second year, the bouncers came to work before the waitstaff. They were needed to control the the crowds who would try to push inside when the waitresses arrived, as to stake early claim to the best seats in the house. The Wednesday concert series brought thousands to Innsbrook, and hundreds would just camp out at Mulligans, many taking in the concert from the comfort of the patio.
John Sweeney, along with the Hurley brothers, Mark and Matt, were experimental business owners. They tried off-the-wall things like “cook your own steak” night, where hot grills stood ready for the sports aficionado to meet tong to meet steak.
The investors ran with their game plan, opening a total of six locations. After the Innsbrook location came Mulligans in Mechanicsville, Sixth Street Market Place, Southside, the Fan and then Farmville.
I see far too many businesses close rather than accept a price lower than the owner believes it is worth (more than ZERO is way too many).
Pride is usually the culprit in these situations. Often the argument is, “we put $x into the build-out and equipment and we need to make that back”. On the surface this sounds like it makes sense, but those are sunk costs — in other words, money that was spent in the past. That works great as a psychological barrier to selling, but it is healthier to keep the costs in mind without getting too hung up on those numbers. There are many reasons why the dollar amount you put into the operation of the business would carry less value (or no value at all, or even a negative value) to a prospective buyer — wear and tear, style, operational differences, etc.
Sometimes a little perspective is needed, and there is a recent post from Penelope Trunk that provides an argument that I hadn’t thought of before — being able to say you sold your business is a great resume builder! She goes even further to say that it doesn’t really matter how much you received as a price for the business because the terms of a transaction are expected to be confidential, or at least that it is not considered strange to not disclose the terms of the sale.
This quote from her post says it best:
To be honest, you still look pretty good, compared to the rest of the world, if you say you started a company and it failed. Because the gumption and intelligence to start a company is flattering to anyone.
But you will look really good if you say you sold the company. Even if you get someone you know to buy it for a very small amount of money.
Of course it is better to sell for more, for a lot of reasons. But there is a point where you are ready to get out of your business. Maybe you’ve gotten what you consider to be a “low ball” offer (someone giving an offer much lower than they think you will accept, just on the off chance that you will go for it). Well, maybe it’s time to consider that offer more seriously. What’s more important — “winning” the negotiation OR getting out of the business without having to say that you shut it down?
All I ask is that you consider this advice when you’re making that fateful decision whether to shut the doors or to take that offer that you feel insulted all of your hard work.
As you may have noticed, we have Cafe Gutenberg for sale (see the big “Cafe Gutenberg – FOR SALE” in the menu above, or just click here). It’s a little bit of a different situation than normal, since usually these matters are highly confidential and even to find out the name and address of one of our business listings you would have to go through a screening process and commit to a Non-Disclosure Agreement.
In this case, the owners had decided to be upfront with their staff and even agreed to do an interview with Style Weekly about their decision to sell. Unfortunately, the article published didn’t accurately portray how the owners of Cafe Gutenberg feel about Shockoe Bottom or what they said about their reasons for selling the business.
Jason Guard, aka @rvafoodie, has given Chef Jen Mindell a chance to tell her side of the story as to why she and her partner are selling the business and to provide some background on how the past few years have been in Shockoe Bottom. Check out her guest post on Jason’s blog, Caramelized Opinions.
No one likes to do paperwork. (well, almost no one — if you find that rare individual, hire them and keep them!)
In order to keep your corporation or LLC compliant, there are things that must be done consistently. These requirements are not onerous, but they are easy to overlook in the hustle of your day-to-day business.
I have seen a number of closing on business deals that are delayed because the corporate books weren’t kept up, or the annual fees weren’t paid and the corporation has to be re-instated. Be sure to set an appointment in your calendar once every 6 months to review all of these items and be sure that there is nothing that you need to catch up on.
1. File your initial/annual reports (also known as a “Statement of Information”)
2. Keep up to date with your corporate minutes and resolutions
3. Record any changes for your corporation/LLC by Filing “Articles of Amendment”
4. Make sure you’re legal when conducting business out of state
5. Don’t commingle your personal and business finances
6. File DBAs for any name variations
7. Don’t forget to close an inactive business by dissolving your corporation/LLC
Read the full post for the details behind each of these pointers and consult with your accountant or your attorney, or whoever helps you with your corporate records.
If you are thinking of selling your business, this review should be on your checklist to take care of at the beginning of the selling process.
Take the little bit of time now to stay in compliance and avoid any red tape nightmares later when you find out that you didn’t!
Is now a good time to sell my small business?
What about all of the talk about changing the capital gains tax?
Should I sell now, or wait a couple of years?
What about the upcoming flood of retirees? Won’t all of that money coming into the market help increase prices?
Lucky for us, there is a recent article about exactly these questions in the New York Times from last Tuesday. Check out the article and the great comments by clicking here.
**I will delve into this topic more over the next year (and probably much longer than that, since this *is* what I do)