Opening Fishstore?

wem21

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So just today when I came back to work, my 2 housemates were fired. Ine of them just won the lottery for 500,000$ and was thinking on opening a fishstore. They said that I could teach them how to care for the fish properly, and they have a studio that is going 200,000$ just a few streets away, already equipped with an office, counter and many many shelves. It seems like a good idea, but I would like some advice from fishloreans-Maybe some of you have opened an LFS before?
 

Petdepartmentmanager

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I can give advice on managing
the inventory, care for the fish, and maintenance of a commercial system. But, not so much in actually setting a new store up, as I walked into something that was up and running, although in quite dire straights. So as far as customer service, working with the supplier, and again care and maintenance of the fish feel free to ask anything, but the actual setting up of a business model is a little out of my wheelhouse
 

lilabug4545

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Aquarium Co-Op has a session where you can pay to ask him questions about opening a fish store.
 
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wem21

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Petdepartmentmanager said:
I can give advice on managing
the inventory, care for the fish, and maintenance of a commercial system. But, not so much in actually setting a new store up, as I walked into something that was up and running, although in quite dire straights. So as far as customer service, working with the supplier, and again care and maintenance of the fish feel free to ask anything, but the actual setting up of a business model is a little out of my wheelhouse
thank you! How and where would ypu order fish and tanks from, decor from and plants from? Also, how woyld you get the news out of a new store?
 

Petdepartmentmanager

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Being that you and I are in different parts of the world, the best thing I can suggest is to research some of the fish stores in your area and feel out who they get their fish from. Go in as a customer and assess how their fish look, and just start asking normal questions leading up to where they get their fish. I don't have the luxury of who I can order from, just have learned what not to order from our specified vendor. And you may find that you'll end up using several vendors for their strengths with different fish. As far as the retail tanks and accessories, you'll need to find a wholesaler that will deliver the best quality product at the lowest price to you so you can get some mark up out of it. Most of your margin (difference between what you pay and what your customer pays) will be in the fish. I would go online and check out wholesale companies in Australia for the tanks and accessories, but definitely go to local mom and pop shops to find good quality fish breeders/vendors. Definitely check all of these things out before you jump in head first. Also, I'd seriously consider getting with someone to help you all put together a business model/plan. In doing so you will develop a plan for getting it up and running and getting customers in your door.
 

Books&Fish

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Do you have a Small Business Administration equivalent in Australia? That's the right place to start. They can help you put together a business plan, which includes a marketing plan (with market research) and a budget (accounting, payroll, projected costs and liabilities, expected revenues). Research, research, research--for the business side of things.
 

AngelTheGypsy

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As a retail business owner myself, I can tell you it will be a long journey, stressful, and exhausting, but worth it. Start slow, do your homework, and be smart! One important thing is to be different from everyone else! If you're doing the same thing as every other store in the area, you won't stand out. Focus on customer service. If that stinks, you won't last. Be a penny pincher. $500K sounds like a lot, but not when you start spending it. Use your credit wisely! And have a good accountant!!!! That's probably one of the Most important things to have.
 

ashenwelt

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AngelTheGypsy said:
As a retail business owner myself, I can tell you it will be a long journey, stressful, and exhausting, but worth it. Start slow, do your homework, and be smart! One important thing is to be different from everyone else! If you're doing the same thing as every other store in the area, you won't stand out. Focus on customer service. If that stinks, you won't last. Be a penny pincher. $500K sounds like a lot, but not when you start spending it. Use your credit wisely! And have a good accountant!!!! That's probably one of the Most important things to have.
The accountant is the best recommendation yet. Also you may want to focus on the complaints about what people can't get in your area... But be cautious and remember two things. 1. You have to make a profit. 2. Bad events are told to 10 people, while good is only told to one.

Good luck!
 
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wem21

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Update:

We were doscussing it last night, and we found out a Fishstore 15mins away is openening and hiring fishkeepers to help the owner out. My 2 guys went there just now, along with basic care info I told them about, also made them memorise fish names and their basic requirements. Assumimg they get the job, I probably will only do part time at my job so I can help them out quite a bit.

Thanks all, wish them luck!
 
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wem21

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wem21 said:
Update:

We were doscussing it last night, and we found out a Fishstore 15mins away is openening and hiring fishkeepers to help the owner out. My 2 guys went there just now, along with basic care info I told them about, also made them memorise fish names and their basic requirements. Assumimg they get the job, I probably will only do part time at my job so I can help them out quite a bit.

Thanks all, wish them luck!
They got the job! Going there on Monday.
 

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