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    4 Replies Latest reply on Jun 28, 2009 7:23 AM by phanio

    Need Advice for starting a new business

    Farhanahmed11 Newbie

      I live in the Chicagoland area in this tough economic times I have had a hard time getting back in the employment line. So I have been thinking about opening a Convenience store in the chicagoland area.

      I found a current corner store in a high traffic location and the owner is ready to give the store up for free. Across this corner store just about half a block is a very popular highschool and within a one block radius there is 2 Universities. Also located across the street is a library and many popular stores such as Subway, StarBucks and McDonalds (2 blocks) away. In this area crime is really not a factor and its in a very nice neighborhood. Competition from this store is a gas station across the street (next to the highschool) and another convenience store about 2 blocks away (3 blocks away from the highschool, this store and the gas station would be the closest to the high school).

      Other information about this store. This store currently is "antique shop" which has some minor grocery such as pop, chocalate and lotto. If I take over this store, I turn it into a full convience store. This store is 2700 sq feet, has a one cooler and racks would be perfect for a convenience store. Also, a bathroom in the back and some storage space. Rent is $2200 for the first year/ and $2500 each year after; one year opt out clause would be inserted if things didn't go as planned. Lease would be for about 5 years with 3 year option. The current owner is actually the landloard so a new lease would be created. This owner isn't running the store well plus its antique shop and mostly has the store closed for most of the day.

      I am thinking I would need 3-4 more coolers, 1 freezer for icecream and frozen food; plus the inventory as everything would be needed. Knowing that I would have 5 coolers, 1 freezer and other accessories I am guessing my electric bill will be around $800 (am I right?) Since I would be dealing with many highschool kids, I am thinking I would need an employee for a 5-8 hours a day to keep kids from stoplifting. I am guessing with $2200 rent, $800 electric bill, misc $100 and $1500 for an part-time employee my expenses per day will be $135 per day. Right now the owner says she gets $200-300 sales from lotto (we are not talking about profit).

      I am thinking I can add an ATM, obviously have cigarrette (not for minors of course), add bill payent for electric & gas bill, bus pass and fax.

      What is your suggestion? Should I invest in this location? I believe my inventory would cost about $10,000 (I am totally guessing, please tell me if I got it on the dot), I can get a few coolers/freezer for about 3-5K and some admin fees to start the business. Is this worth it, will I profit? It seems to be at a perfect location and no goodwill (obvioulsy right now its a antique shop and 10% lotto/snacks).

      Will I be able to pay my rent, my bills and get a profit or should I turn my cheek and keep looking for a job?

      Appreciate all the advice, comments and suggestions I can get ASAP. Thanks


        • Re: Need Advice for starting a new business
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Need Advice for starting a new business, Welcome Farhan

          We love Chicago. Two suggestions One: Develop a business plan. the plan services as a tool to you.

          Two: Contact SCORE. SCORE is FREE. Also go to Members page and share some info.
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Need Advice for starting a new business
            RanksIntl Adventurer

            C-store has a lot of potential! On average a convenience store without gas can make between $700-$800,000 and up. So, the idea is a certainly a sound one. The first thing that you need to do is develop a business plan. It is going to guide you through this entire experience and let you know if it is in fact a worth while venture for you. Your plan so far sounds great but you need to put it into writing, particularly if you ever need to secure investors. I can help you determine if this is a good idea, go over exactly what you need and help you figure out the financials if you would like some help. You can email me at the address in my profile.

            • Re: Need Advice for starting a new business
              harishmanek Adventurer
              I have an opportunity which you can start off in this store but for an consideration if interested get back to
              • Re: Need Advice for starting a new business
                phanio Pioneer
                It would seem that you have really thought out what you want and need to get this store off the ground. Your revenue and profits will depend in part on how much effort you put in this business and how receptive your customers are. Before pulling the trigger with a c-store - I would suggest that you first research your local market. If you are targeting the students from the High School or Univeristies - find out what they want and need - maybe it's not a c-store. maybe they would rather have or need a need restaurant or game store or even book store. Much better to knwo and provide what they want then to waste time and money providing something you think they want. Your local small business development center (SBDC) can help you with the research or you can survey the local population.

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