MAKE & TAKE GOURMET: $30K Per Month?

Despite numerous shuttered Make & Take Gourmet meal prep kitchens and rumors of franchisee contract buy-out offers and franchisee group lawsuit against the franchisor, Watertown NY franchise owner Jennifer Vail says things are great. In an interview with the Watertown Daily Times, Vail reports that she has 20 employees, several hundred regular customers and an average monthly purchase of approximately $100 per customer.

At 300 customers, that would equate to $30,000 per month, or $360,000 per year. While a respectable amount, that’s quite a bit lower than the Cicero store sales figures the Bellsos fed the press last year:

Make and Take’s Cicero location sells, on average, 3,000 meals per day, Bellso says. In December 2006, during the busy holiday season, sales increased to 6,000 meals per day, she adds.

Make and Take’s Cicero location will generate annual revenue of $1.2 million to $1.5 million, says David Bellso, Make and Take’s franchise-sales manager.

However, Vail, with owns the meal preparation business with her husband, Alan, sounds busy but upbeat:

“It’s like a 24/7 job…. I just wanted something else that would branch off into another direction. And this seemed to be a great fit. And it has been. It’s been phenomenal. I’ve been very lucky.”

“… the great thing about owning this franchise, because they give us all our recipes every month and they give us all the prep instruction and they tell us how to do the station layouts and all of that. It’s pretty easy.”

“We have 4,200 square feet here, which makes us the largest Make and Take Gourmet. It had to be in an area that’s well lit, in a safe location, because we have a lot of women that come here by themselves and we’re open at night.”

“Alan and I also decided we wanted it to be in a high-visibility location. Some of the Make and Takes are in the back of complexes and aren’t as visible. We have a great walk-in clientele, which is very, very important. We also wanted to have one that’s large enough in case we wanted to expand.”

“It’s key to get people in the door. Once we get customers in the door, then we’re golden. It’s kind of a glitch having people not really understand exactly what it’s all about. It’s the convenience. We’re all so busy anymore that most people do not want to go home and cook.”


“WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? “I don’t know. Not another Make and Take right away, that’s for sure. This is time-consuming enough for me…”


3 thoughts on “MAKE & TAKE GOURMET: $30K Per Month?

  • July 29, 2008 at 8:22 am

    Nice article to help them market and maybe get some more people in the door but if you look at their schedule they don’t have anyone.

  • July 29, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    How bout we just do the math? General figures in my opinion.
    Besides the point that the ticket price most owners based their numbers on was a $200 dollar ticket/customer-not $100.
    With $30,000 in sales a month you have to pay salaries, rent, inventory, utilities etc.
    Lets just say for the sake of argument that you do have 20 employees(?) making $8.00 an hour.
    Again for the sake of argument, let’s say each employee works part-time anywhere from 10-20 hours a week.
    Payroll is going to be (if I did my arithmetic correctly) -$1600-3200/ week minimum or $6400-12,800 a month just in EMPLOYEE salaries. I don’t think there are many MA owners that are making that much in salary THEMSELVES, let alone paying it out in employee salaries.
    Lets not forget the rent on a 4200 square foot store that is a guesstimate of a minimum of $10-15/sf, more if there are CAM charges involved. Especially if it’s in a “primo” area.
    Now let’s talk about food costs- MA industry standard for food costs is between 45-50%. Then let’s add in utilities for all the tables, freezers etc. which can run into the $700-$900plus range per month, not to mention insurance.
    In my opinion that $300,000 dollar number is looking a little dubious. I’m not saying it isn’t true, in my opinion, I just don’t understand how anyone can make any profit with that much overhead. You would have to be VERY highly capitalized; which most business owners aren’t and can’t sustain that kind overhead/cash-flow going out every month for a sustained period of time.
    That is the kind of stuff that’s written that burns my biscuits!

  • July 31, 2008 at 10:23 pm

    No, I think Bellso’s Burned Bicuits are on the MTG menu for next month… right after the buttocks botox party

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