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I've been looking around Fl for about two years now for a Liquor Store business. Problem is, there books.Help

I've been looking around Fl for about two years now for a Liquor Store Package business. Problem is, there books are terrible. How do you sell a business or expect someone to buy a business when even the Brokers will tell you that that's just the way it is with Liquor Stores and Convenient Stores? And is there a safe way to start your own Liquor Store package business?

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The BAF Group LLC

A lot of the keys are knowing the businesses. You should know what the Cost of Goods (COG) or Profit Margin is for each of the businesses you want to investigate. If a Convenience Store (C-Store) has a 20% Profit Margin showing in the Tax Returns, you know that either the Owner is an idiot and is not pricing things correctly, or he is pocketing the Cash and not putting it on his Tax Return. Then, you can look at the Prices he charges against the Invoices for his major products and figure out which is correct: Is he an idiot or simply robbing Uncle Sam?

But in order to make those first decisions, you have to know what the average Margins are in your area, for C-Stores. Even if you get what looks like very nice books, how do you know they are correct? Unless you (or, preferably your Accountant) knows that business, you can see some pretty numbers and they mean nothing to you.

Another way to do it - and people do this in small food operations, like Bagel Shops and Pizza Shops - is to simply sit there for a week and watch what money is going through the place. It is a terrible way to do it, but it is something we see routinely.

The problem is, if you finally get comfortable with a Liquor Store purchase where the Seller is not reporting all of his income, you can't get it financed, anywhere. The Seller HAS to take a note. The Bank will not play games like that, in trying to figure out what the Owner might REALLY be making in profit!

Oct 1, 2009
Chuck Woolweaver
Franchise Your Business in 60 Days
Palm Beach County, FL


I am a Florida business broker (my profile shows my franchise consulting practice) and I have 12 liquor stores listed that provide P&L's or tax returns with prices ranging from $200,000 - $800,000.

Oct 1, 2009

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