Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Cat Cafe without the Cafe idea

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Array
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    2

    Default Cat Cafe without the Cafe idea

    Help me out here:

    So there's tons of research that says that hanging out with pets boost productivity and reduces stress. In Japan, they have these animal cafes with all sorts of critters that you pay to hang out with and have a coffee. Since US food safety doesn't like mixing live animals with food, I was thinking of nixing the cafe part of the Japanese cat cafe entirely. It would be geared to students and creative types looking for a place to work where there are also cats to hang out with. So, more like a library than a cafe. I'm not sure where exactly to go for this type of thing, because people who replicate the cat cafe model in the states just make two separate enterprises with a door connecting coffee shop with room filled with cats. I do know some of the odds and ends of how I want to run this, but I don't have a one-to-one model I could base my operation on.

    I think there is a huge market in college towns for this sort of thing, and nixing food prep would ease the FDA off my back, but how doable would this venture be?

  2. #2
    Web Consultant
    Array
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    9,856
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by osteoarch View Post
    Help me out here:

    So there's tons of research that says that hanging out with pets boost productivity and reduces stress. In Japan, they have these animal cafes with all sorts of critters that you pay to hang out with and have a coffee. Since US food safety doesn't like mixing live animals with food, I was thinking of nixing the cafe part of the Japanese cat cafe entirely. It would be geared to students and creative types looking for a place to work where there are also cats to hang out with. So, more like a library than a cafe. I'm not sure where exactly to go for this type of thing, because people who replicate the cat cafe model in the states just make two separate enterprises with a door connecting coffee shop with room filled with cats. I do know some of the odds and ends of how I want to run this, but I don't have a one-to-one model I could base my operation on.

    I think there is a huge market in college towns for this sort of thing, and nixing food prep would ease the FDA off my back, but how doable would this venture be?
    Doable? Of course it's doable. How will you make money? Enough to cover expenses, pet care, rent, utilities, employees, liability insurance, and make some kind of profit?

    It's a good idea, with I'm sure a small target market. But is it a profitable idea? Is it just a cute novelty idea? Once the doors open is it something with scale that people will frequent more than once? Weeks later? Months later?

    Also college and creative types are generally broke and what money they do have they spend on supplies, food and entertainment. Is this the kind of business that they'll spend their last $20 on?

    Just tossing out some immediate concerns that pop into my head. Yes you can do it. But can it make any money by targeting a crowd with the least amount of money?

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Array
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    2

    Default

    I hear you. In a perfect world, I would have a pay what you can system in place, and I would run it as a non-profit with volunteers. The common method I've seen is charging between 10 and 20 bucks an hour to basically sit in a play room with cats, and with this I would aim to more create a social space where you are not necessarily force to constantly buy things to stay there.
    And I mention the poorest demographic because they are the ones I think would benefit most from this sort of thing, but I think there would be a market for small vices like this. If you have the choice between going to a movie or hanging out for the same amount of time with animals you couldn't otherwise interact with?

    I want to serve my community with my business, basically, and that's making the money difficult.

  4. #4
    Web Consultant
    Array
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    9,856
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by osteoarch View Post
    I hear you. In a perfect world, I would have a pay what you can system in place, and I would run it as a non-profit with volunteers. The common method I've seen is charging between 10 and 20 bucks an hour to basically sit in a play room with cats, and with this I would aim to more create a social space where you are not necessarily force to constantly buy things to stay there.
    And I mention the poorest demographic because they are the ones I think would benefit most from this sort of thing, but I think there would be a market for small vices like this. If you have the choice between going to a movie or hanging out for the same amount of time with animals you couldn't otherwise interact with?

    I want to serve my community with my business, basically, and that's making the money difficult.
    So then a location would probably not be the best idea, unless you can get and live on donations. Maybe start small with a few animals and visit hospitals, and senior centers and such to get a feel for it. Serving the community is noble, but it doesn't pay well and things cost money.

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Array
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Jackson MO
    Posts
    1,515

    Default

    It has potential and is something can help some people and provide enjoyment to others. First thing I would do is get a business plan template and fill in the questions. Next I would create a budget for the first year. That budget is going to change a lot over the first year and that is OK. Just make sure that the changes balance out. Over plan your expenses and under plan your income. I also would not go non-profit. Volunteers are great for short term projects, but volunteers need to eat, pay rent, pay utilities so they need to earn money. You will need to have employees that you pay to have consistency. Remember, profit is not bad it is good. Profit is what you get for doing a good job, it also lets you know if you are providing a real service that is meeting a real need. If you want, budget in a free day, were everyone can come in for free.
    HouseView™ - The leading real estate site for South East Missouri. Follow us on Twitter @HVOL.
    Jackson MO Real Estate, Cape Girardeau Missouri Real Estate, Festus Missouri Real Estate

  6. #6
    Queen of the Forum
    Array
    KristineS's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Traverse City, MI
    Posts
    4,734
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    A lot of animal shelters have started doing things like this. They bring animals that are available for adoption to offices, or clubs or whatever, and let people cuddle and hang out with the animals. The hope is that some will get adopted and the adoption fees will pay for bringing the animals and help support the shelter. I'm not sure how the model translates when it's just paying to come and play with the animals. If you want contact with animals, but don't want one, you can always volunteer at a local shelter or borrow a friend's dog to take for a run. I'd think there would have to be something more being offered than just pay $20 and come pet a cat for a while.

  7. #7

    Default

    All of these are great points and while most college students don't have money, some do and Starbucks is thriving in college towns too.
    Some miss their pets terribly.
    A business plan is essential here.
    Beyond that think a little bigger than just a pay what you want model.
    Could clubs hold meetings there and pay some amount?
    What else could you offer besides just this?
    Could some of the cats be for sale?
    Could some have owners on vacation?
    Could there be another pet oriented business?
    Could you sell food and treats that they could essentially buy to go toward a cats feeding?
    Can people bring their own pets?
    Perhaps find a mentor that owns one of these.
    I challenge my clients to talk to 10 people that are in their industry/niche and ask them about their experience. The information is so valuable. I did a quick search in San Diego where I live and there is The Cat Cafe in downtown and they have cats for adoption.
    Hope this helps.

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Array
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Jackson MO
    Posts
    1,515

    Default

    I keep hearing that college students don't have money - hog wash. They may not have much but the amount that can be spent on discretionary purchases is generally high. Most having things like food, rent, utilities paid either by either student loans or parents. That is why places that serve $5 coffee and $2.50 beers can thrive in a college town.
    HouseView™ - The leading real estate site for South East Missouri. Follow us on Twitter @HVOL.
    Jackson MO Real Estate, Cape Girardeau Missouri Real Estate, Festus Missouri Real Estate

  9. #9
    Web Consultant
    Array
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    9,856
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by nealrm View Post
    I keep hearing that college students don't have money - hog wash. They may not have much but the amount that can be spent on discretionary purchases is generally high. Most having things like food, rent, utilities paid either by either student loans or parents. That is why places that serve $5 coffee and $2.50 beers can thrive in a college town.
    Yes, but the competition for those dollars is high. Is a cat cafe the place where they're going to spend money consistently? Or would they rather spend their limited income on the things you've named?

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •