Business Plan and Funding Application for Cranky's: I was hired by a Twin Cities chef to write the business plan and application for a new bike-themed bar and restaurant in Minneapolis.
Executive Summary of Business Idea:
Cranky's Bicycle Bar - the first and only bicycle-centric bar and restaurant in Minneapolis. Dedicated to the bicycling community, Cranky's will provide a meeting place for cycling enthusiasts, commuters, families and friends. Cranky’s will be a one-stop community gathering place, serving food and servicing bikes, while simultaneously promoting and celebrating Minnesota's robust cycling culture. Cranky's will focus on green foodservice practices, will source local ingredients, and serve regional craft beers.
Description of Product and / or Service:
Cranky’s will provide a variety of unique services that reflect the cycling community as well as Minneapolis' local food culture. Among the services offered will be “tune while you dine” bicycle maintenance, a "blend your own drinks" bar featuring both adult and non-alcoholic drinks created by bike-powered blenders, and ongoing bicycle safety education initiatives. Cranky's will also provide coin/key storage lockers for helmets and gear and will feature secure bicycle parking (with the option for valet.) An onsite bicycle accessories shop will have reward programs for cyclists and offer discounts for all metro area bicycle shop employees. Future plans include a large patio for outdoor dining, sponsorship of charity cycling teams, a bicycle food delivery system and hosted public viewings of events such as the Tour de France and Giro D'Italia. In keeping with the cycling theme, Cranky's will feature a unique decor composed of vintage biking posters, locally-created cycling art, and a repurposed cigarette machine that vends bike parts and accessories.
Market Size/ Potential/ opportunity
The Twin Cities are renown for their dedication to bicycling and the community/environmental benefits created by it. According to a recent article by bicycling.com, Minneapolis is the number one city for urban cycling in the United States. In 2007, the census bureau listed
Minneapolis as the number two city for percentage of commuters who regularly bike to work. The League of American Bicyclists recently awarded Minneapolis the title of “Bicycle Friendly Community." Forty-five miles of new bikeways have been funded for construction this year alone.
As the only bike-themed bar, restaurant, and gathering place in the Twin Cities, Cranky's will be in a unique position to both celebrate and service this currently untapped market. The list of potential locations for Cranky's are all within a few blocks of the Eastern starting point of Minneapolis' Greenway. Similar businesses around the country (Chicago's Handle Bar, Philadelphia's Over the Bar, etc.) are thriving, yet are set in markets not nearly as dedicated to the bicycling lifestyle.
The target audience for Cranky’s is everyone who’s ever ridden a bicycle or the car driver who's considering switching to a more green way of life; Cranky's will welcome the most avid cyclists, the casual biker, the parents teaching their kids how to ride their first bike, the impoverished college student looking for tips on inexpensively improving their ride, older couples taking a tandem ride on a sunny Saturday afternoon, and more. The Twin Cities cycling community is a diverse and robust one, and Cranky's will be there for the enjoyment of all.
Sales and Marketing:
I’ve already begun my grassroots marketing campaign for Cranky’s on Facebook, with 500+ people following our progress, and more joining every day. Cranky’s has been mentioned on local food blogs such as Heavy Table and City Pages' Hot Dish, as well as cycling blogs Cycle Twin Cities and MPLSBIKELOVE. In print, Cranky's has been written up in Metro Magazine (The Bike Issue) and an upcoming issue of City Pages.
Cranky’s website, www.crankysbicyclebar.com, has already had hundreds of hits over the past few months. As Cranky’s continues to grow, so does our marketing via web tools like Twitter and Foursquare. Traditional, print marketing will be done via ads and mentions in Minnesota Monthly, Star Tribune and VitaMN. We plan to spread the word about Cranky’s through marketing in bicycle shops and by sponsorship of teams, races and events. Cranky's-themed gear will circulate throughout the cycling community in the form of hand screen-printed posters, custom made messenger bags, regionally brewed beer and more. My goal for Cranky’s is to have a successful, dedicated group of social media-savvy people who are committed to making this happen; when we open, it will look like we’ve been operating for years.
Cranky’s business plan has been drafted, the design concept has been finalized (with room for adjustment,) and a short list of potential locations has been thoroughly scouted. Marketing efforts have built an expanding community awareness. The remaining step is securing funds to make Cranky's a reality.
I graduated from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design with a BFA in furniture. Over the last eight years I have worked in the foodservice industry in a variety of different roles, from waiting tables to tending bar to managing. I will bring my restaurant and bar experience and background in design to help get Cranky’s up and running: my skills and experience have made me a true “jack of all trades." I’ve made many contacts and friends within the Twin Cities' foodservice community - an experienced group of chefs, wait staff and management who have all expressed interest in helping me to successfully open and operate Cranky's.
The total funding needed is approximately 375,000 to 575,00 dollars. This would cover the cost of renting/leasing the space, renovation of any existing appliances and signage, licensing, advertising, staffing, stocking, training, utilities, and employee wages for the first 6 months. After that, the establishment's profits will keep Cranky's in operation.
Cranky’s is looking to provide full dining service for anywhere from 75 to 150 guests at a time depending on season, size of location and hours of operation. Guest check averages during lunch will be from 10 to 15 dollars per person and 15 to 35 dollars during dinner. An estimated three solid turns (lunch, afternoon and dinner) of 75 to 150 people per turn, averaging 15 dollars from each person, equals a gross of $3,375 to 6,750 per day, $101,250 to 202,500 per month, and $1,215,000 to 2,430,000 per year. Within five years, Cranky’s could potentially gross $6 to 12 million, making it both successful as a business and as a vibrant gathering place for the community.