McQ’s will soon be The Black Diamond

Posted: July 19, 2010 in Opening Business in Spokane Valley

  Last Sunday we  met the new owners of McQ’s who took over the business on July 8th. Their names are Steve and Kenna and I have to say that I would give them better odds at making it than most for a few reasons. First of all, this is Steve’s idea and desire but Kenna is there to support and it is great that she is there and willing to even work in the kitchen which is often below most new owners. Then I really like the way Steve bought the business and negotiated the lease. It shows he is smart.

  He originally looked at the business months ago when it was for sale at $110,000. He said it had been a life long dream of his to own a pool hall but after looking at it closely he decided to pass. By then he sort of had the bug to get into the hospitality biz and so he looked at our old place at Sprague and Vista and then he looked at Bottom’s Up. He seriously considered both and even began negotiations with Norm Thomson to go into the Bottom’s Up location. But then the McQ’s people contacted him again. Turns out the guy who had bought the business 2 years before for $170,000 was two months behind on rent and things were bleak. So Steve negotiates first with the landlord and gets a way better lease and picks up the business by paying the guy something like $25,000 for his assets. So he is into the place right because he was patient and savvy.

   Steve has acquired his business acumen the old-fashioned way: experience. For thirty years he has run a street sweeping business in San Francisco. A few years ago, he and Kenna moved to Spokane but still run the sweeping business through a manager.

  The other reason I give them a good chance is because that even though they did not pay for the pool business they did get a going concern. Pool leagues love McQ’s and have been supporting it for years. Steve and Kenna plan to remodel the end away from the pool tables and get a restaurant and niteclub going. I always look at building a hospitality following like building a campfire. Each feature like a good happy hour or Monday Night Football is another log on the fire and contributes to the blaze once it starts to burn. The pool business they have inherited is a great bed of coals that an operator with Steve’s patience can  get a bonfire going on top of that we can all go to and warm our little booties at on those cold Spokane winter nights.

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