The Victoria Restaurant

Once upon a time there was a local restaurateur who owned three restaurants. The Broadway, the Victoria Grill, and the Sid-B. The Victoria was the first, not that big, but he established himself as a decent businessman. Then came the Broadway, located not too far from the Vic, but a little larger and able to serve more customers. Then came the Sid-B. Much larger than the Broadway, and able to push customers through at higher speed. All his restaurants served very similar cuisine, not too much difference between the three except for customer capacity and speed of service. His business was successful, profitable, and had small but steady growth over the years.

Then one day the landlord of the Victoria location informed his tenant that the Victoria would have to close. The building was in poor condition. Time and inadequate maintenance had taken its toll. The restaurateur  was saddened by the news, but not too concerned. His other two locations could easily handle additional customers. His overall business continued with relatively little change, just in two locations instead of three. In fact, his expenses went down since he no longer had to carry the overhead of three locations. Overall profitability improved.

A few years went by and then a new competitor, the South Circle Steakhouse, entered the market. With a similar menu, larger premises, and even faster service than the Sid-B, Mr. Restaurateur’s combined businesses began to lose market share. Soon his customer volume at both his locations was down (30% at Sid-B and 15% at The Broadway) significantly. Profits declined, but he was still profitable. The consolidation to two locations was fortuitous.

What to do? Well, Mr. R. did what any intelligent, successful businessperson would do. He rustled up $40,000,000 in capital (mostly borrowed) and began construction of a third restaurant, right in the same location as his original Victoria Grill, with virtually the same menu. Nothing spells success like building a third location half way between your two other locations when your customer base has declined significantly. No better way to improve your business than to cannibalize the existing customer base of your two existing restaurants. Same overall customer volume, with a third location and it’s overhead to improve profits. Right?

So when is that new traffic bridge the City of Saskatoon is planning on building to connect Victoria Avenue and 3rd Avenue going to be done?

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One thought on “The Victoria Restaurant

  1. Robert Clipperton

    Interesting. The City’s Moving Forward session on ‘Bridges’ pointed out that a key consideration for a new bridge location is its connection to main traffic arteries. If these criteria were applied to the Traffic Bridge location today, a bridge would never be built there since Victoria Avenue really goes nowhere. These funds would be better applied to a new proposed 33rd Street bridge.

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