The owners of the Melbourne venue give it away for free

The owners of the Melbourne venue give it away for free

It turns out that some things in life come for free, with Melbourne bar owners currently looking for the right person to gift it to. Hard Rubbish is located 12km north of Melbourne’s CBD, on the border of Preston and Reservoir, right on tram line 86. The small space, filled with locals on Friday nights, is furnished with decorations found mostly on the street. .

Charlotte Tizzard runs the bar, which she owns with her brother James and sister-in-law Katie Smith. She is currently worth around $ 90,000, but promises that offering to take over the business for free isn’t a gimmick. There is no debt and she will make a “modest” profit for her new owner.

“I’m not giving it away because it’s failing,” says Tizzard.

The three owners “didn’t feel good” about selling it to the highest bidder, he says. They wanted to be able to choose the right person.

“Giving away not only gives us a large pool of people to choose from, but it would allow some younger people to step in the door to own their own business.”

Tizzard had a surprise baby on lockdown and wants more time to focus on his other hospitality business: Knochen Joint, a Hawaiian diner in Reservoir.

But finding the right candidate to take over wasn’t easy.

There was a lot of interest and some unusual approaches, including a Danish woman who wrote a line about wanting to move to Australia, another whose suggestion was to simply change her name to “Cool Bar” and several emails of people simply asking if he can have it, with no details on how they will perform it.

“I predict serious people will have [their application] closer to the closing date, “says Tizzard.

“We are looking for people who have been to Hard Rubbish at least a couple of times and who like it. Our preference is for people who are local ”.

There are some rules. The new owners must keep the four employees and pay them super premium rates.

There is also a verification process, which will include a presentation night in November where the strongest contenders will present themselves to the community.

“Our plan is to have an information night where we pick up our regular and local customers and the people who are shortlisted can make a presentation,” Tizzard said. “We’re trying to make a nice version of Gladiator.”

The representation of their proposal by the selected candidates will be on display at the bar for two weeks, with patrons receiving a sticker every time they buy a beer so they can vote for the one they like best.

Tizzard admits the voting system “could easily stack up,” but says they want the locals to have their say, with the three owners holding the ultimate veto power.

“We will try to take everyone’s opinions into account. We believe we have some intuition and requirements for the bar to continue “.

When the bar opened six years ago, you could buy a sparkling house for $ 7 and enjoy it with a chili pesto jaffle. Now, customers can order burgers or nachos, there are six beers on tap, a large cocktail menu, and rising inflation, so house bubbles will set you back $ 10.

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Tizzard has been transparent about costs, providing applicants with an overview of expenses and revenue, which averages just under $ 22,000 per month.

He is asking candidates to outline how the menu or atmosphere of the bar might change. They can present their questions in any form, be it written words, a song, a cartoon or some interpretive dance, but most of all they need to be prepared to work hard and love the community.

“When we opened this place we were hoping people would come and it went beyond our expectations. It was a truly amazing experience, ”said Tizzard.

“But it’s tough out there. Even paying the rent is so difficult. Things like owning a home aren’t even a dream people have anymore.

“We just want to give that little opportunity to people who might not otherwise have it.”

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