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 Post subject: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:39 pm 
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So tell me friends / people who want to eventually work for themselves...

If I were to be starting up some kind of business in the St. Aug / Jacksonville area, would anyone be interested in joining forces?

I'm not sure what yet, I just know that I need to be my own boss. I'm thinking some kind of retail, but I need to find product / location and either business partners or assistants.

Very rough idea here, not really sure where to begin. I already do a bit of the online stuff (ebay, etsy) but don't have a store front where I can get serious deliveries or anything.

In the past I have looked into getting wholesale accounts with Chinese / Japanese distributors, Pearler Beads (yes, those kids toys I made the pixel art with), and even Lego. The Lego thing almost worked, but they fed-ex all their stuff can can't do it to a P.O. Box or residence (that was the ONLY hold up).

So I'm open to suggestions. I'm even going so far as to looking for people who already own a store or know someone who owns a store who could accept wholesale deliveries for a small fee and / or free merchandise from me.


Open discussion, please give me any and ALL ideas. Feel free to talk about your personal ambitions for your dream job / business, because I'm willing to go just about anywhere with this. Hell, I've always wanted to own / manage a small arcade, so there's an idea even...

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 5:04 pm 
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One thing St. Augustine is really lacking is a good coffee shop - the kind with comfy couches to hang out on.

The Hyppo is pretty close, but their emphasis is popsicles -- I'm talking coffee, couches, maybe beers, and various board/videogames/books.

Like, take Stogies, get rid of the smoking, add coffee/espresso, up the lighting a bit, and throw in NES, Genesis, Jenga, and Cards Against Humanity.

That's. That's my dream.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 5:41 pm 
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Napalm Man wrote:
One thing St. Augustine is really lacking is a good coffee shop - the kind with comfy couches to hang out on.

The Hyppo is pretty close, but their emphasis is popsicles -- I'm talking coffee, couches, maybe beers, and various board/videogames/books.

Like, take Stogies, get rid of the smoking, add coffee/espresso, up the lighting a bit, and throw in NES, Genesis, Jenga, and Cards Against Humanity.

That's. That's my dream.


That... sounds awesome. Like Backstreets used to be with a little more.

Just off the top of my head though, that sounds like about $50 grand to get going, maybe more. I think I can scratch up about 5 if I sell ALL my extraneous stuff that I didn't sell when I was unemployed.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 5:43 pm 
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It sounds awesome, but do you think, realistically, you'd have much a customer base for something as niche as that? I ask genuinely; I don't know what the demographics are like where you guys live.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 5:51 pm 
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ive always wanted to have an arcade.....

Or like a bowling alley with a neat arcade in it.

Or like comic/gaming store.


but i think an arcade with all eras of arcade machines would be epic.

Coffee shop does sound neat. Maybe a gamer theme too? Have cool names for stuff. Maybe have Nerdcore rap acts and stuff? :P

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 6:10 pm 
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In terms of coffee beer and so on, St Aug is Tue place to go to find stuff like that. A lot of those types of businesses have come and gone here over time, and none in particular stand out as being overly awesome (although I may be overlooking one in particular)

I remember crash talking about a bowling alley at one point, and I remember thinking that it sounded awesome idea. Now, combine bowling, arcade, board games, coffee, beer, maybe some xboxes, and an area to sell legos and pokemon.

Edit : Hell, my dad always said he'd wanted to open a coffee stand. Maybe he could bring his espresso machine...

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 6:32 pm 
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yeah... Bowling Alley would be so amazing.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 10:25 pm 
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Morte_The_Skull wrote:
It sounds awesome, but do you think, realistically, you'd have much a customer base for something as niche as that? I ask genuinely; I don't know what the demographics are like where you guys live.


The trick is that it isn't niche - It's actually quite flexible.

Do you want to go read/write a book in a nice quiet place, and enjoy a coffee? This can be that place.

Do you want to have a beer after work? Sure.

Do you want to get together with friends to study for an upcoming test or work on a project? Heck yeah.

Do you wanna play some old-school videogames? You can do that.

Wanna have a game night with friends? This could be where you go to do it.

The bowling alley is a cool idea! You'd need a large place, though, to pull that off. But still pretty cool.

....what if, could you make a kickstarter or something for this?

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 10:27 pm 
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Then you guys can brew your own beer... and brew it with coffee... you'll get your buzz and your beer... you can call it Buzz Beer!

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Also, really hope the soundtrack CD for the movie is the stuff from the actual movie, because this might be the first soundtrack I've actually bought from a movie since like...fucking Pokemon The First Movie. Yeah, I bought it, I was like 12 when it came out, big whoop, wanna fight about it?


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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:20 pm 
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did i hear someone seriously suggest an arcade? the thread isn't called 'Going out of business'.


be a psychic healer. or a dog psychic.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:42 pm 
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Arcades aren't entirely dead. Just look at Dave and Busters, they're HUGE! Also, they're huge, which helps.

Now how.about this.... A beer / coffee service room, a small bowling alley (like 4 - 6 lanes, a room with several tables for games, a couple pin ball machines and maybe a pacman galaga combo game, a small toy store and an xbox alley where we could hold rock band and smash Bros tournaments...?

I think I just found my dream business...

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:47 pm 
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LocrianDm wrote:
Arcades aren't entirely dead. Just look at Dave and Busters, they're HUGE! Also, they're huge, which helps.

Now how.about this.... A beer / coffee service room, a small bowling alley (like 4 - 6 lanes, a room with several tables for games, a couple pin ball machines and maybe a pacman galaga combo game, a small toy store and an xbox alley where we could hold rock band and smash Bros tournaments...?

I think I just found my dream business...

Dude, if I knew anything about business I would demand to be your partner. But I don't. So I'm sad. You should make everything ice themed and call it the Neskimos Igloo. and then have them play there whenever the hell they want.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:22 am 
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LocrianDm wrote:
Arcades aren't entirely dead. Just look at Dave and Busters, they're HUGE! Also, they're huge, which helps.

Now how.about this.... A beer / coffee service room, a small bowling alley (like 4 - 6 lanes, a room with several tables for games, a couple pin ball machines and maybe a pacman galaga combo game, a small toy store and an xbox alley where we could hold rock band and smash Bros tournaments...?

I think I just found my dream business...


I like it, but my take would be like this. Keep in mind, in my vision, this is in downtown St. Augustine, where space is something of a premium. But it would probably be one of the better spots for this:

Imagine: you walk in, and there's the coffee bar, with one of those coolers with bottled beers, and maybe like, four-six beers on tap, and a few wines-by-the-glass.

You got couches and chairs around coffee tables, as well as a few two-toppers with standard chairs and standard-height tables.

You got The videogame Couch - a couch, tv, NES, Genesis against the wall.

And that's about it, I guess. It could be done in something not much bigger than my own apartment. Shit, that could be done in a space the size of The Hyppo (the downtown one!)

I imagine it being like, you don't go there to strictly play videogames - you go there to hang out, and have coffee/drinks. There's videogames, along with boardgames and books and such. That's, that's my dream business.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 1:38 am 
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LocrianDm wrote:
Arcades aren't entirely dead.
neither are record stores, that doesn't mean you could open a new one anywhere and be profitable.


one of my friends wants to run a lan cafe in our home town and can't get it through his head that we've had 3 or 4 at different times and all of them went under in a year.


these are pretty epic plans for someone with little capital

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 2:24 am 
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No, you think too big. Start out small and iterate.

Put a coffee stand in an alley, pay $3k for the coffee maker, and see if people like it.

Then get a little hole-in-the-wall, make it popular, and keep upgrading.

If you don't burn the fucking espresso. Get it from Seattle.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:58 am 
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Fallout wrote:
No, you think too big. Start out small and iterate.

+1

walk dogs. very little overhead, mainly advertising.

do market research. talk to clerks in stores, people in queues, people in pubs etc in st Augustine about the type of businesses you think you could run and poll their opinion on the matter. if you hit on a good idea, with it or not, make a business model before deciding on anything. you'll need to know a lot about the local area, basically. when i opened my dog walking business for the first time, i hit on the snag of the demographic of my business not being able to afford my services, and not being able to conceivably lower my prices enougg. pretty big snag. now i've moved, i can do it affordably. i also have a car now, so i can not only reach more suburbs that can afford me, i can still work the areas between.

it's not really about what you want to do, more what you can do, and what you can build from. my dream job is bartender on the space station.
so instead, i think about strange things all the time call it a career. and walk dogs and busk. not calling myself a house husband THAT shit is TOTALLY EMASCULATING

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 8:07 am 
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I'm gonna be realistic here and tell you straight up that no matter how awesome the idea of the beer and coffee shop with a bowling alley and some consoles running is; it's practically doomed to fail.

Think about the audience/customers... People who are drinking coffee are probably gonna lounge for a bit, read/study and basically chill out in groups of like 3 or 4, these people will most likely be the college crowd with a few elderly people strewn about. Your beer drinking crowd well depending on the area the demographic can range from college kids to the working drones, who usually don't clash well with college kids, I haven't seen how the happy hour goer has mingled with the coffee drinking study/reading group, but honestly I don't see it playing out too well...

This is where I think the idea ultimately fails... your gaming area... You're gonna get a bunch of kids teenagers and manchilds there... Completely obnoxious to the coffee group, loud, and running amok. Even if this area is completely across from the coffee area, these people will be disturbed and not want anything to do with that establishment after putting up with it for so long. I don't think the beer group would mind the game players too much, but I can see a few clashes... Just imagine a heated argument with two drunk adult manchildren over a friggen xbox game, it happens when we're sober; never mind when inebriated... Not only that, but the upkeep on the bowling lane will probably be insane. Having to polish/wax the lanes and balls every week or so, new pins every now and then, the shoe rentals and all that... The gaming area will need tons of looking over. Someone will steal controllers, games, consoles, hell someone will try to walk off with the tv but you'll catch that quick. How are you going to make sure none of those items suddenly disappear? Maybe a checkout by holding IDs? But who knows how effective that really is, and who would want to hand over their ID to play a game?

I don't know how it is in St Augustine, but here in Boston it is a SON OF A BITCH to get a liquor license. On top of that it's easy to lose it (capacity issues, underage kids, bartenders hooking their friends up etc.) Dealing with alcohol is a nightmare unless you have at least a couple hundred thousand to back you up.

I agree with Fallout, start with just a coffee shop or a watering hole and branch from there.

I am not a businessman by any means, but I've worked for enough (especially in the service industry) to look out for these kinds of things.

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Also, really hope the soundtrack CD for the movie is the stuff from the actual movie, because this might be the first soundtrack I've actually bought from a movie since like...fucking Pokemon The First Movie. Yeah, I bought it, I was like 12 when it came out, big whoop, wanna fight about it?


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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:30 pm 
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I completely agree with everything said since my last post. Dream shop is just that, a dream. It's something that I could do on the side once I have a sustainable business for the primary income.

Liquor licences in St. Aug are non existant, but you can serve beer and wine without one, so that's not entirely dead. At this point though, I'm thinking I could start off with something retail and grow from there. Coffee isn't a bad idea, but I know nothing about it and I don't like coffee, so I would need someone on board who could do so, like my dad except he wants to leave st Aug after he retires.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 2:00 pm 
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I want to open a Comic/Game shop, but I have no idea where to begin or how to get funding. I do think it would be easier to do this with a partner though. Once I can get a surplus of income then funds part will be a little easier.
Yeah if you are interested, I am too.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 3:43 pm 
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LocrianDm wrote:
Liquor licences in St. Aug are non existant, but you can serve beer and wine without one.


Not quite accurate -

A beer/wine license can run up to $1,000, depending on type/county (package vs consumption-on-premesis, etc) I think most people wind up paying something like $300 or so. It's peanuts compared to the other costs of getting a business running - the point is you do need one to serve.

Liqour licenses are retarded - there's a fixed number per county, based on the population. You can enter a raffle when new ones are created, but most buy an existing license from a private party. I think I've heard the figure for a liqour license can go as high as $100k.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 3:53 pm 
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Napalm Man wrote:
That's, that's my dream business.


Why do you keep writing like that? Are you adding an extra that's for where you make a dramatic pause in describing your dream business where you look off into the distance and shed one tear, or are you just not realizing that you keep typing it twice?

Either way, I know you've had this idea since high school, but that doesn't mean it's a good idea. I would love for it to succeed, but it almost definitely would not, for most of the reasons Blackman said, and more importantly, for financial reasons. I could go into a detailed description of how you would need accurate financial forecasting to determine how much money you need to get started under different working capital structures, but I won't unless someone wants me to. Also, if someone comes up with a GOOD idea and wants me to help them crunch the numbers and do some cash flow projections, I can help with that.

I think downtown St. Augustine is a really tough market to crack, but a sandwich and smoothie/coffee shop would be your best bet. Think about how many places there are to eat in downtown, and then think about how many actually sell a good sandwich. If someone opened up a sandwich shop that could crank out cold subs as fast as Jimmy John's, it could do some serious biz. Add in smoothies and iced coffee and you're money. Minimal seating, no Sega, no booze (for now), fast food. Boom.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:04 pm 
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Sir Stank a Lot wrote:
I think downtown St. Augustine is a really tough market to crack, but a sandwich and smoothie/coffee shop would be your best bet. Think about how many places there are to eat in downtown, and then think about how many actually sell a good sandwich. If someone opened up a sandwich shop that could crank out cold subs as fast as Jimmy John's, it could do some serious biz. Add in smoothies and iced coffee and you're money. Minimal seating, no Sega, no booze (for now), fast food. Boom.


Yup. You're talking about a little place called "Cousin's" that used to be on St. George street. Place was always hoppin when I went in there, from the time I was 8 until I lost interest in downtown (after highschool? /shrugs). Don't know why it went under eventually, but they had fast, good sandwiches and cherry limeade. Only place in town I remember you could get limeade.

Problem with that area though, is the rent. Tiny space goes for thousands a month.

Here's my new idea : Mall kiosk during holidays and height of summer, and selling at conventions. I have a line on distributors from overseas and the possibility of Legos as well as T-shirts an old high-school friend of mine makes. He also has little statues like Dr. Who phone booths, Cyberman heads and Companion Cubes.

Problem is, I don't want to limit myself to Legos, T-shirts, pop-culture figurines and stuffed Pikachu and Domo. I also have my candles that I make, that do fairly well when I actually get them on ebay, but I feel like I'm missing a big part of it. I could get a small business loan, as I have pretty good credit right now and my car is almost paid off, but I want to do as much of this out-of-pocket as I can.

Other idea I had at one point was pressure-washing / odd job contracting.???

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:10 pm 
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Spidey wrote:
I want to open a Comic/Game shop, but I have no idea where to begin or how to get funding. I do think it would be easier to do this with a partner though. Once I can get a surplus of income then funds part will be a little easier.
Yeah if you are interested, I am too.


im down.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:13 pm 
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Sir Stank a Lot wrote:
Napalm Man wrote:
That's, that's my dream business.


Why do you keep writing like that? Are you adding an extra that's for where you make a dramatic pause in describing your dream business where you look off into the distance and shed one tear, or are you just not realizing that you keep typing it twice?


Oh, it's very intentional, and you're spot-on - it's where I make a dramatic pause, look into the distance, shed a single tear, a rainbow appears, and an eagle flies by. That all happens in the timespan of that comma.

I probably do it way more often that I should, but, y'know. It happens. I try to emulate my speaking patterns when I type, and I know that I repeat the first word of a sentence/trip-the-first-syllable (espeically on 'th' sounds) when I get excited about something. And when I'm trying to be funny, I do the word, pause, repeat bit for a comedic dramatic effect thing.

I try to make it so that, if you know me, you read this in my actual voice in your head. That's the goal/reasoning behind "That's, that's" and "It's, it's" and "y'know."

Sir Stank a Lot wrote:
Either way, I know you've had this idea since high school, but that doesn't mean it's a good idea. I would love for it to succeed, but it almost definitely would not, for most of the reasons Blackman said, and more importantly, for financial reasons. I could go into a detailed description of how you would need accurate financial forecasting to determine how much money you need to get started under different working capital structures, but I won't unless someone wants me to. Also, if someone comes up with a GOOD idea and wants me to help them crunch the numbers and do some cash flow projections, I can help with that.

I think downtown St. Augustine is a really tough market to crack, but a sandwich and smoothie/coffee shop would be your best bet. Think about how many places there are to eat in downtown, and then think about how many actually sell a good sandwich. If someone opened up a sandwich shop that could crank out cold subs as fast as Jimmy John's, it could do some serious biz. Add in smoothies and iced coffee and you're money. Minimal seating, no Sega, no booze (for now), fast food. Boom.


Yeah. I think I'm describing not so much my "dream money-making opportunity" as I'm describing "dream place for me to hang out at" or "dream place for me to work at when I don't have to worry too much about the financials" or "dream thing for me to do when I become an eccentric millionaire and can throw a lot of money away."

The sandwich shop is a great idea - nobody has a good sandwich downtown. A Subway opened not too long ago, but, y'know. Nobody actually likes going to Subway. A Jimmy-John's-alike would be killer.

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 Post subject: Re: Going into business
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:41 pm 
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Napalm Man wrote:
A Jimmy-John's-alike would be killer.


Yes. If I ever did the food business, it would be like this. Moderately enjoyable food, lightning fucking fast. Would even hire a kid with a bike to deliver from time to time.

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