The first part of the conversation with Łukasz Kasztelan, the owner of the Wrocław pub Przybij Piątaka. Pub is a difficult business. In an interview with the Financial Strength, Łukasz brought the backstage of running such a facility a little closer. Of course, we will focus primarily, but not exclusively, on the financial aspects. We invite you.
What financial outlays do you have to incur at the beginning of your business?
Investment outlays on a pub may fall within a very wide range. If we consider the premises where there was a recent gastronomy, which were run to a similar extent as ours, the costs may be small. Many people want to give up a place for a long time. In this case, the only key issue is to determine its height. On the other hand, a unit that we adjust ourselves will be a rather large investment.
How did your adventure with the industry start?
I rented my first pub after a non-existent club. On the spot there was a bar, warehouses, sofas, chairs, part of the tables, adapted conditions for this type of activity. I didn’t have to do anything to rework, design, ventilate, buy kitchen or bar furniture. The sanitary inspection took place without a visit because a few weeks earlier there had been a visit to the previous owner and there was no need to visit me again. I did not pay any compensation. I made the change of the décor, combined with a small renovation, myself with the help of my family. I purchased the necessary equipment mostly used and only necessary. In turn I rented the sound system. I made the tables myself using the dismantled material remaining from the change in the décor of the hall. The owner of the property paid me two months’ deposit in instalments and gave me two months’ rent. I believe that this has allowed me to open the premises for an absolutely minimum amount of USD 45,000. The opening time is 2 months. You have to be lucky enough to find such an offer. During the development, new funds were invested in the premises and the current value of the investment is certainly much higher, estimated at about 200,000.
How was your second pub created?
I rented the second pub after the shop and I had to adapt and decorate everything. The scope of work required the employment of specialists. We had to rework the layout of the rooms, put the silencing of the ceiling for the neighbors, lay the electrical, hydraulic, sewerage, ventilation systems, replace the doors, build a bar, bathrooms, kitchen and everything else. There was nothing in the place that could be used. Everything was therefore reworked, demolished and required the purchase of new materials. Most of the equipment was purchased new from professional gastronomic brands. The scope of initial investment is 160,000 USD. The opening time is 8 months.
What is the situation with alcohol supply? Do you have one distributor supplying them?
We are not likely to be at the wholesale level ourselves. When there are small shortages between deliveries, we tend to eat at nearby markets or at Selgros located not far from us. There are wholesalers that distribute alcohol, beer and fresh products. Everyone delivers the goods directly to the premises. We order fresh products, chemistry and partly alcohol and cigarettes in Macro. It is not the best supplier, but it has a wide range of products. Alcohol in a Premium or Janus alcohol wholesaler. Beers are usually ordered from different suppliers, because each brewery has its own distributor or several and if we offer several types of beer from different breweries, we will not be able to get them from one supplier. Cooperation should be established with alcohol, brewery and cigarette dealers, as we will receive a mass of gadgets, glasses, glasses, etc., as well as a mass of other products.
What is the subject of eating?
It’s hard to say. If there is an idea for a place in our head and we have a full idea of it, then we know whether it is necessary to eat it. There are bars where meals and snacks are the mainstay. There are bars where drinks and cocktails are the basis, as well as bars where beer is the core. In the second place we were forced to interrupt the operation of the kitchen for two months due to technical reasons and the turnover did not drop, but our guests often asked about the kitchen. This is certainly an asset, but I do not think it is necessary.
What are the biggest problems you have encountered while running a pub?
Bar is a rather heavy business to do. Employees often treat work as casual or temporary. It is difficult to find people who have a future in this industry and with whom they work well. Some suppliers have an unreliable relationship and do not import supplies on time, which is very problematic. Customers are different, sometimes a difficult Verizon alcohol customer is a real challenge. There are accidents of unjustified damage, dirt and, of course, accidents of a physiological nature.
How did you attract your first customers? Where did you advertise?
Turning off the property is also a big challenge. The easiest way to start is from the university, because there are a lot of potential clients, many scientific circles, student organizations, advertising opportunities. Advertising costs are negligible. Students eagerly enter into cooperation with the bar