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It should come as no surprise the nation’s top-grossing 7-Eleven is not in the East Village, the West Village – or on St. Mark’s! – but on a stretch of Long Island highway.
And why is 7-Eleven so popular on Long Island?
Ubiquitous at intersections and along highways here, 7-Elevens also have cultural significance for many Long Islanders, who see the shops as a repository of childhood nostalgia, including memories of multiflavored Slurpees.
“7-Eleven has been here since the ’60s, and they really have a monopoly on the convenience-store market,” said Gregg Carlin, a retail real estate broker and senior vice president at CBRE’s Melville office. “There are no other chains that do what they do here. Long Islanders are very comfortable with 7-Elevens.”
With 208 locations on Long Island, how could it be anything other than a monopoly?
LI 7-Eleven stores top performers for chain [Newsday]
This is what happens when you let hillbillies play business in the city. Denny’s is opening their first Manhattan location in May on Nassau Street – yeehaw! – and has already begun pissing people off by applying for a liquor license. Whatever for? Denny’s wants to serve booze with their Grand Slam breakfasts beginning at 10AM on weekdays and 8AM on the weekends. Why? Because Denny’s envisions Wall Street fat cats will be entertaining clients at the turnpike-staple pancake chain. Yes. Denny’s thinks people who make more money than god will be dining with clients at greasy ol’ Denny’s. Sigh…
Downtown Express reports:
Representatives of the restaurant went before C.B. 1’s Seaport/Civic Center Committee on Feb. 18, hoping to secure a full liquor license that would allow patrons to chug one down with their breakfasts. With food service planned to start everyday at 5 a.m., they hoped to start serving alcohol at 10 a.m. on weekdays, 8 a.m. on Saturday and noon on Sunday.
Frances Allen, the restaurant chain’s chief brand officer, told the committee the request was, in part, based on “fitting in to the local community,” since this will be the first Denny’s in Manhattan.
“Manhattanites have a different kind of brunch culture,” she said, “so we feel it’s important for people to have the opportunity to enjoy a drink with a meal at whatever time of day.”
And Gurbax Marwah, the franchisee whose California-based company will own the Nassau St. restaurant ― along with 23 others across the country ― said it was just about business.
“We chose 10 a.m. for [weekdays] for the simple reason that there will be people coming from the Financial District, whether they’re entertaining clients, or they just want to have a snack and a refresher, so we will need them to be served,” said Marwah. He later added that he believed pushing any of the hours back could take away from his breakfast crowd.
Naturally the community board all but stoned the Denny’s reps at the meeting!
“You must have the point of view that a lot of Manhattanites are alcoholics, if you really think you’re going to lose the breakfast meals if people can’t have a drink that early,” said committee member Paul Hovitz.
He pointed out that most restaurants and bars in the area generally start serving alcohol around 11 a.m., and also noted that 150 Nassau St. is bit too far north to cater directly to Financial District business meetings.
“I’m just trying to figure out, who needs a drink at 10 a.m. next to [the Spruce Street School] and a university?” said Sarah Elbatanouny, a John St. resident whose daughter attends the elementary school, also referring to Pace University.
And Marijo O’Grady, Pace’s dean of students, opposed the early hours because she feared, among other things, “direct marketing to our students” regarding alcohol.
One resident of neighboring 140 Nassau St. attended the meeting to share a particularly blunt opinion of the situation.
“The kind of person who wants to have a drink before noon is not the kind of person I want in front of my building,” he said. “Or in my neighborhood.”
Yet another example of how clueless large chains like Denny’s and 7-Eleven are about integrating themselves into New York City. 7-Eleven thinks they’ll win over New Yorkers with $5.55 pizza and key copying kiosks – because hey, we like pizza, and damn, we’re always locking ourselves out of out apartments. And Denny’s, oh Denny’s. Really? This is the equivalent of putting your big ol’ boots and spurs up on the table, tipping your wide cowboy hat and bellowing Forgettaboutit! to the waitress, because, hey, you’re in New York City! That’s what New Yorkers do, right? We’re all cringing right now.
Denny’s plan for breakfast booze doesn’t go over easy at C.B. 1 [Downtown Express]
The Patel family have owned and operated the 7-Eleven franchise in Riverside, California for 19 years. Recently, 7-Eleven seized the location from them claiming “excessive couponing” and forced the Patels to sign over the store despite asking for time to hire a qualified lawyer to represent them. The store seizure has sparked outrage in the community prompting public protests, a Facebook page and an appearance on the John & Ken Show on Los Angeles talk radio station KFI AM 640.
The petition can be found on Unhappy Franchisee.
This Week’s News
7-Eleven Makes Gale Brewer Want To Puke
Find out what the Manhattan Burrough President said about 7-Eleven this week. Read More.
7-Eleven AC Units Force Residents To Abandon Their Bedrooms
Residents on 11th Street are forced to sleep in their living rooms because 7-Eleven’s illegal AC and refrigeration units are THAT loud. Read More.
Historic Neighborhood Wins Battle Against 7-Eleven
A historic neighborhood in St. Augustine, FL says a 24 hour 7-Eleven would be a traffic nightmare for the pedestrian-friendly businesses as well as the nearby Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind. The planning and building director agrees and says NO to 7-Eleven! Read More.
7-Eleven Franchisee Takes To The Airwaves For Help
This week, Dev Patel, the son of Riverside, CA 7-Eleven franchise owners Dilip & Saroj Patel, were guests on the John & Ken Show on Los Angeles talk radio station KFI AM 640 to discuss the recent seizure of their 7-Eleven franchise by 7-Eleven. Read More.
If the sight of another 7-Eleven makes you want to puke, you’re not alone!
Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President, was speaking at a CityLaw Breakfast Series event this week regarding the various borough presidents’ priorities, when she was asked a question on promoting local business.
“We have the chain stores. I hate to say this, but if I see one more 7-Eleven, I’m going to throw up. I think it’s a very important issue, particularly for Manhattan,” Ms. Brewer continued. “The other boroughs, to be honest with you, do not have as much of a challenge. Because I asked every single one of my 51 colleagues, ‘Is this a problem?’ And it was primarily in Manhattan.”
7-Eleven currently has 37 locations in Manhattan – up from 8 just a few years ago – and plans an additional 100 locations by 2017. 7-Eleven has shuttered two local businesses – that we know of – Gramercy Corner and Kyung’s Gourmet Deli by opening locations right next door to them.
Ken Barnes, 7-Eleven’s director of northeast regional development, has said “We can’t open more New York locations fast enough. Every neighborhood is a target.”
7-Eleven’s spokesperson, Margaret Chabris, admits 7-Eleven’s Corporate Manifest Destiny is the result of the bad economy in 2008, stating that, in NYC, “a lot more desirable locations are available because many businesses have had to retract because of the recession.“
Manhattan Borough President Not a Fan of 7-Eleven [Politicker]
This week, Dev Patel, the son of Riverside, CA 7-Eleven franchise owners Dilip & Saroj Patel, were guests on the John & Ken Show on Los Angeles talk radio station KFI AM 640 to discuss the recent seizure of their 7-Eleven franchise by 7-Eleven.
In the interview, Patel says last December, 7-Eleven called his parents and requested a sit-down meeting with the franchise owners the following day to discuss financials. Two men from 7-Eleven Asset Protection team sat them in a room and told the couple they had several options:
1. Sign over the store, lose the store, money, investment, equity, etc. or
2. Not give it back and 7-Eleven will sue and take everything any way.
What a deal! 7-Eleven gave them until the end of the day to decide. The corporation claimed the Patel’s were involved in “excessive couponing,” specifically, using 7-Eleven’s Slurpee coupons in a fraudulent manner, paying themselves $1.50 on every Slurpee the Patel’s gave away free via the coupons.
The evidence? A few pages of transactions and 10-15 seconds of video of the franchisees working behind the counter. (7-eleven installs their own camera in franchise locations to keep an eye on things.) According to Patel’s parents, the tape wasn’t clear and they asked to see it again, 7-Eleven denied their request. Patel says he and his family were not given ample time to consult with a qualified franchise attorney to protect their assets.
You can listen to excerpts from the show here at Unhappy Franchisee.