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Where do you advertise to sell restaurants?


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My realtor almost slapped me when I told her we weren't thinking of selling the business. And as I thought about it - of course, with such amazing press over the past 7 years, if nothing else, we have value in our reputation. But I don't know that I've seen where folks advertise to sell restaurants. What do you all know about magazines or websites that have that info? 

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any and all. I think the brand has more value than the rest, but it is a turnkey operation at this point.

People sell businesses on Craigslist.  What would you be selling exactly?  Recipes?  Brand, website, fixtures?  The building itself?

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Your realtor should have pointed you to a business broker but I realize you are in a small market.  You need to establish as noted above what you are selling and what you are keeping. I would contact some brokers in the largest city near you and see what they say. It is complicated and an area where some expert advice might make it a better outcome.

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All kinds of ways to value a business...5x receipts or whatever.


But this is different.


In this case the business is gfron. And he's leaving.  I'm not sure that the business is worth much without him.


Completely agree with getting advice from a broker or a lawyer or both.


An accountant would have thoughts about whether you could sell the business cheap...take a loss...and apply that to your taxes. Or some such chicanery. Might be a thought.

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Business broker, but, as stated, this place has been mostly about your uniqueness. That said, you've been doing well with lunch being more pedestrian, so I would emphasize the value of that. IMO, most buyers of this sort of package are looking for a plug-and-play set up with standardized recipes, routines, schedules, etc.

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HeidiH - she's able understands the breakdown of the business, my question is only about where to advertise since we really don't have that outlet in our area.

And I completely agree that the business is me, which is why I hadn't considered it. But, as has been pointed out to me - someone could buy a turnkey restaurant, get a little training from me, and then turn it into their own, capitalizing on the years of press we've rcvd. If I closed tomorrow, there would still be plenty of tourists showing up at our door to eat for well over a year. The lunch side of things isn't as exotic and could easily be taken over and probably done much more effectively.


So again, my question isn't about what is for sale or the value, but where? Brokers. Craiglsist. But surely there's other publications or websites.

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This post is not directed at Gfron, but rather at those who suggest C.L. or a broker......


O.K., so C.L.:

Advertising on C.L. means everyone knows that the business is for sale.  When this happens, I can guarantee 4 things happening:


1) Customers are reluctant to come.  Many associate a business for sale with a sinking ship, and this means a drop in quality of food/ service, regardless if this is true or not.  Expect a drop in sales from regular clientelle.


2) Staff start looking for new jobs.  No one can guarantee staff that they will still have thier job in the next 6 mths or that they will still have the same position or salary.  It's just simpler to quit and find a new gig. 


3) Suppliers are reluctant to take orders or demand c.o.d. for deliveries.


4) The vultures come.... The used food eqpt. dealers smell a deal when they see businesses for sale on social media.  They will come, un-announced, during service, and offer $100 for this piece of ($4000.00) of equipment or that one.  These guys regularily make 250% mark up on every item they buy (unless it's at an auction, in which case they will outbid each other....)  Believe me, you don't want these guys in your restaurant.


In other words, C.L. is great for getting rid of that old coffee table, but not for a business.


The broker.....

I can't speak for the U.S., but around here (Vancouver, B.C) a business broker is just that, a broker.  He is not a real estate agent, does not have a realator's license, does not enjoy the backing of the real estate board or it's laws.  What they do around here is copy and paste businesses from real estate agent's websites, put it on their own website (or C.L. as the case may be), and when they have an interested party, make a deal with the agent for X% of the commission, or X % of the sales price.


In other words, they represent the buyer, not the seller.


The joker in the deck...

Is the landlord of course!  Whether you want to acknowledge it or not, the L.L. decides who signs the lease, and thus indirectly decides who buys the business.


Many experienced restauranteurs do acknowledge this however, and by-pass the seller and the realator and go direct to the L.L..  It's pretty easy to figure out why they do this:

1) They have a proven restaurant model, and don't need the goodwill of the previous owner.

2) They are only interested in the infrastructure:  The kitchen with it's ventilation and fire supression systems, plumbing and electrical; the restaurant license, the liquor license, the parking lot, and the lease.  The landlord can supply all of these items.


So, my question to gfron is:  Why scratch your head?  Your realator should be earning his/her commission, let them figure it out.  Why do you think they are asking you about selling?

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