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Starting a Cafe

Discussion in 'Small Business' started by Darlinghurst Boy, 27th Sep, 2015.

  1. Darlinghurst Boy

    Darlinghurst Boy Well-Known Member

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    i would to eventually take my redundancy from my normal job and buy or start a Cafe .
    But so many in Sydney City so will be tough.

    i used to own one about 20 years ago , i would like to open 24 hours .

    If anyone here knows of a good cafe for sale let me know.
    Not really into franchises because a friend of mine had a WENDYS and lost everything.
     
  2. datto

    datto Well-Known Member

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    I sometimes buy coffee from those vans that drive around industrial areas.

    Not the best coffee I've tasted and expensive....$4.50 for a medium cap. They're good when they're busy because you can easily knock off a cake from the side of the van lol.

    They must be making money cause it's the same owner for several years. Or maybe he's mortgaged the house to keep the business going! I think the cost under 100K plus fees.
     
  3. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    The vans are the way to go, get something unique and do it for the life style, theres little money in cafes.
     
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  4. Coota9

    Coota9 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Big advantage these food vans have is the fact they side step one of the biggest costs in any business which is paying rent.
     
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  5. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    @Coota9 plus the labour side, that would be a nightmare getting reliable staff and hanging onto them.I'd think the turnover of staff would be quite high
     
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  6. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    I reckon you should get a van/truck and mount a small BBQ on it and sell steak/sausage sandwiches at lunch time around the busy job sites. You could also have a another person doing coffees. This is coming from a tradie and I would buy my lunch from someone if they did this. There was one guy that used to do it but I only seen him once as he came upto the area for the day from Wollongong where he usually works.
     
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  7. AndrewTDP

    AndrewTDP Urban Planning Consultant Business Member

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  8. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    @Brian84 yep sold! I'll go a sausage!
    Was at the races today, they had a bunch of pizza vans, kebabs etc etc the sausage on bread for the local school was killing it!

    But if this is for the city you'll need to add some aoili and Camembert to spruce it up! Plus jack the price up heaps!
     
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  9. legallyblonde

    legallyblonde Well-Known Member

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    We have a coffee van come to my workplace... People write their order on a white sticker and put it in a baggie with their money.... The van arrives collects the orders and money.. Makes the drinks which are then all deliver together and a group email is sent out 'COFFEE'.. People come collect their drinks.

    Awesome business model IMO. Somewhere like my work which is just ever so slightly out of the way there is serious demand for this. It is probably good for productivity too!
     
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  10. geoffw

    geoffw Moderator Staff Member

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    When I had my franchise sandwich store I investigated a van very seriously . The figures were looking good... until I found out the labour costs were not being included in the costs, and there were other cash in hand issues which were required to make it work. I was no longer interested.
     
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  11. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    And that's where you make some money. Not a heap of overheads and you can make some good coin. Even pull up outside of a busy pub or club and you will make a motza. Who wouldn't love a sausage sanga after a night on the drink.
     
  12. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    What were the issues with the cash in hand. As long as your paying tax on what you earn I can't see what the issue would be. Sure there would be a lot of people who wouldn't be honest about what they earn from getting paid cash but if your honest then I can't see a problem.
     
  13. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    And also what tradie doesn't love a bacon and egg roll for breakie. Buy the products wholesale and make a decent profit from it. Buy a can of coke for 30c and sell for $2,50. Not a bad return over time.
     
  14. Speede

    Speede Well-Known Member

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    Hard part would be getting a custom made fan...who would build one?
     
  15. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    All you need is like a big toolbox that is big enough to fit a BBQ in it that slides out on a trundle slide sort of thing, welder or toolbox manufacturer could do this and just have the box mounted on the back of a truck. Probably need a seperate part for a generator to run the coffee machine and drinks fridge unless you can hook it up to a battery in the truck or something like that.
     
  16. geoffw

    geoffw Moderator Staff Member

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    The issue was that it was only profitable if the proceeds weren't being declared. That included paying royalties to the franchisor as well as tax. It was only because I knew what sort of figures to expect from labour and food costs that I realised that the figures were rubbery.
     
  17. Brian84

    Brian84 Well-Known Member

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    Fair enough. You could always not purchase a franchise and do it on your own, that way you don't need to pay royalties.

    Imagine how many people run these businesses that don't declare a cent.
     
  18. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    There's so many things you can do to pimp out chuck trucks!
    Seen a couple of pimped out coffee kombie's recently. one looked like a mobile DJ machine. The roof hinged open across the long edge, with a big tv and speakers and the coffee makers stood in front of it with their counter, they even had a smoke machine going!
    I had 10 coffees to get in the mood! :cool:
     
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  19. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    I know someone who used to run a business selling food from a van that he would drive to different industrial parks. I think he used to make good money, all above board, but there is a LOT of preparation involved. He used to freeze his own ice to keep things cold, all food was prepared the night before. I guess he could have used a generator but that costs money to run and this was years ago. He was telling us about his "typical" day a few months ago over a coffee. I was exhausted just listening to it.

    He moved into a coffee shop to do something different. I think he was tired of all the prep work and maybe wanted to be in a fixed location, cannot really recall why he stopped the van business. The coffee shop was a disaster. He was not allowed to sell sandwiches because nearby shops sold them, but these nearby shops were allowed to sell coffee to go with their sandwiches... go figure.

    He lost everything.

    We also know someone right now who is trying to get out of a business that he thought would be good, but has consumed his every waking moment. He also was told only one other coffee outlet nearby, when there are five others. He's been told one thing, and the reality is different. I guess that is what you call "learning". It's put a huge strain on his life and he is getting out. He will likely lose a fair bit of money.

    I'm also guessing these food vans have to still pass regulations, and if you just chuck a barbecue on a trailer and an esky of drinks, you are taking a risk (several large risks)?
     
  20. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Nowadays depending what you're running you can do it very cost effective. The caravan world has some great gear available. A solar panel and 2 batteries can run a fridge, but for heating water you'll need a small genny.
    There are also gas run fridges and gas for cooking.

    A mate has a coffee shop, he is happy with the experience but can't wait to sell it. You can make money but you have to work 7 days a week doing long days or you get labour in for the lot and make a tiny bit. He does the latter. There's not much room to a make bucket loads of cash.