Friday 25 October 2013

How much is enough?

I was sitting in a busy Tim Horton’s having a coffee today, and as I often do, I was wondering just how much the owner must make from his franchise. I know that it is profitable; it would have to be, because every Tim’s I have ever been in is pretty much busy all of the time.

Fifteen years ago I was told that on the average a Tim's location will sell 600 to 900 dozen donuts between 7:00 and 9:00 AM which covers the costs of the restaurant for the day and everything else is gravy. That is before the advent of the drive thru.

Sitting beside me were two guys looking at building plans. One of the guys was probably the owner of Tim’s and the other would have been the contractor. We started to talk and it turns out that they are leaving the planning stage and just about to enter the construction phase. They are going to put in a double drive through and gut the inside of the place. It will be a big job! I asked how long the Tim’s will be shut down and he said that they won’t miss a day of selling coffee and donuts because they will bring a trailer in to sell product while the construction is going on.

That kind of makes sense, because once you change locations, it is easier to keep going to the new spot. A body in motion tends to stay in motion and a body at rest tends to stay at rest. I am paraphrasing Isaac Newton and more than likely incorrectly, but I guess what Newton meant is that once you change where you get your coffee, you are more than likely to keep getting it at the new place. I bet you didn't know Isaac Newton liked Coffee? I thought he was an apple juice kind of guy myself.

They said that all of the work will be done in five weeks. That’s pretty fast, but I guess if you toss enough money at a problem, miracles can be achieved. I was kind of hoping that the owner might give us a free coupon for a coffee, well I was until my buddy mentioned that we don’t usually come to this Tim’s. Thanks Ken! I doubt we would have gotten the coffee, but now we’ll never know.

How much is enough? This is a very busy location and there is always a line up. I doubt they are trying to alleviate the wait time inside, but they do want to move the drive thru people faster. I somehow doubt that us walk in people will get any different service. Drive through people maximise the profits, whereas “sit downers” take up space, time and the tables and floors need to be cleaned which takes time and as we all know, time is money.

I hope that the owner and his patrons both benefit from the construction, but I will go back to my regular Tim’s and wait for them to decide that they don’t have enough and need to expand.

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