Is Retail Share the New Restaurant Rent Solution?

Making Monday's a little brighter one poké bowl at a time 🙌🏼

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So many deliciously healthy lunch options! Which signature dish would you choose?

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It's no secret that high rent rates have wiped out restaurants. With overhead costs increasing in an industry with an already thin profit margin — the restaurant sector at a mere 5 to 7 percent average, low compared to other industries, such as retail businesses that can average between 25 and 35 percent — staying alive in a landscape that welcomes guests but is ruthless among competitors is far from easy. But could coworking a space be the next solution?

Sharing a retail space isn't a new concept. We've seen big-name brands such as Target and Walmart subletting mini-stores to Apple to reduce real estate costs. While this may not work for all types of restaurants, there is no denying that small shops can economize by sharing space. Hawaiian fast casual Poke 305 in the Miami area does this, sharing one of its locations in an open layout with other eateries inside. 

Especially for new restaurants in a bustling, aggressive, urban city, paying for rent and being chained to throwing money at a long-term lease can seem daunting, but retail sharing is a lucrative alternative for these up-and-comers. A new company called Bulletin loosely translates this business model into the retail industry by providing a more flexible answer to brands that want to sell their products in brick-and-mortars. Bulletin splits a physical location into various sections that can be rented out on a monthly basis.

And restaurants offering off sections of their square footage are becoming more commonplace. In Dayton, Ohio, Neapolitan pizza and craft beer shop Old Scratch Pizza may be independently owned, but this brand is seeking a new roommate.

“You may not have known that there is an additional 1,500 square feet at the north end of the building that we have been saving for an additional tenant. ...It also has 2,500 square feet available in the basement for storage, packing, manufacturing, etc.," Old Scratch Co-Founder Eric Soller said. “This is a great opportunity to be a part of a great neighborhood. What is your dream? Coffee shop? Salon? Bike shop?" Read More