West End Coffee Company has been providing coffee to Greenville, NC, and beyond for over 25 years. Since 1992, West End Coffee Company has provided coffee everywhere in the area, from local restaurants to coffee shops, churches, and numerous other businesses. If you’d rather bring it home, you could pick up a bag of coffee from Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Everyone had a taste for their brew. The business was booming.
Until 2013, that is. John Brown and Rebecca Schramm were in a new relationship and wanted to start a new adventure. They thought owning a business would be a fun and exciting way to do just that. They pulled their money together – a cool half-million dollars – and bought the company for themselves. They had big dreams to fill every cup in the nation with their coffee.
However, their story is proof that buying a business with someone you’re dating is a bad idea. And it’s not just because of the office gossip.
West End Coffee Company on The Profit
The Profit Season 2 Episode 13
Marcus walked into the coffee shop, wanting to take in his surroundings and enjoy a taste of the locally famous coffee. A small sip of the coffee and Marcus agreed it was delicious, which was saying something for not being much of a coffee drinker himself.
However, he didn’t get much of a chance to enjoy his drink. John and Rebecca broke his concentration with their bickering.
Marcus had to interrupt their fight to introduce himself. This was the first sampling of the biggest problem the company had – constant fights between the owners. Once lovers, they could hardly stand to be in the same room anymore.
When the ex-couple finally stopped yelling at each other, Marcus found something even more shocking than their constant screaming. Even though they were running a coffee business, neither of them knew how to roast coffee. He was incredulous.
Why on Earth have they not taken the time to learn the roasting process? Rebecca’s excuse was that they never needed to. They had hired the roaster from the previous owner. If he knew how to do it, then it was taken care of.
So why was Marcus willing to stick around for this?
He saw the potential for a lot of money to be made. If West End Coffee Company could maximize their coffee roasting, and sell to more local businesses, they could bring in $3 million, half of that being pure profit. Attractive numbers to Marcus. He was ready to create a successful plan. If only the business owners could work together.
He offered $200,000 for 51% of the company.
But Marcus added another condition to his offer. Technically, Rebecca’s role gave her the luxury to fire John if she wanted. Marcus wanted her to give up that power over him.
John and Becky decided it was worth a try. They accepted the deal and promised to work together as adults. Marcus wanted to see if they could keep that promise. So, he tested them by throwing them into a meeting with Larkins, a local restaurant. Hopefully, the two could prove they could work together as business partners and not like they were in a constant catfight.
Somehow, their meeting didn’t go horribly. Despite a small argument brewing, John and Rebecca walked away, scoring a deal with Larkins.
A Deal Gone Sour
An ordeal back at the shop proved that Marcus hadn’t seen the end of the bickering matches. John and Rebecca were fighting yet again, over an inventory mistake Rebecca had made. Marcus was intent on getting a new inventory system in place so that they wouldn’t suffer the losses of another costly mistake. To get the last word in, Rebecca showed Marcus text messages to prove how corrupt John was. He was trying to sell the business behind her back.
How was Marcus supposed to work as a partner with these two? Neither of them was capable of heading a company, at least not together. Someone had to leave, and since neither John nor Rebecca were volunteering themselves, Marcus decided it had to be him.
With the deal cut off, could either of them keep the business alive?
West End Coffee Company after The Profit
After the show, it seems that Rebecca had left the company, and John is now the sole owner. With a new location, he can operate it as both a warehouse and a retail coffee shop.
With Rebecca out of the way, John has been able to make some business progress. He decided to learn about the roasting process finally. John also has a new ordering system in place. He can buy high-quality coffee beans and use them before they go stale.
They have gained new clients and reinforced their relationships with old ones, including several top restaurants in the area. They continue to supply coffee for local churches and coffee shops.
John hopes to open a second shop in Greenville, and eventually expand to even more.
Every Saturday, you can find West End Coffee serving coffee and smoothies at the TD Saturday Market on Main Street in Greenville, NC. They serve their beverages alongside several other vendors with locally grown produce and nonprofits.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is strictly informational; INSIGNIA SEO is not affiliated with West End Coffee Company, The Profit, or any of their subsidiaries.