I've been thinking for some time now about going self-employed as I'd be much happier being my own boss, working the way I want, and most important, having job satisfaction. I value being able to do something that makes me happy over something that makes me rich; to that end I'm weighing the idea of opening a comic book store by myself or with two friends depending on their finances and commitments. I'll admit I'm actually fairly new to comic book reading but I'm really getting into it and have always been a geek, so being in the environment of what many would dub "a geek's home away from home" (i.e., a comic book store) would give me great job satisfaction. Plus of course I would try to be diverse with my stock selling table top games, game and movie memorabilia, t-shirts, and Magic The Gathering cards, which are a keen hobby of mine. Also, I'd host game nights for a different tabletop game each week and Magic nights to keep customers involved and, well, for fun! :) The two friends I may go into business with have been around comics since their teen years and both are keen table top gamers frequenting a store in Cardiff dedicated to it, so they would make great partners -- especially as they've both remarked many times about how they'd love to start their own store.
But before having that discussion with them, I'd like to make sure I know the facts about how difficult it is to open one in the UK. The city I have in mind has just the one comic book store for a city of over 80,000 people. I believe I could get a suitable space leased for £8,000 a year with rates at roughly £3,500, however, not until March of 2014 as many rates lower that £12,000 can be waived dependent on the circumstances of the business such as projected takings. I would guess that most -- if not all -- of the rates would be waived in this case. This would also include being in a space above a high street store, which is a far better location that the comic store currently in business.
Based off of this information, can anyone give me some advice such as how much start up capital I should put aside, etc.?
well lets look at some of the costs
Start up costs: Inventory, racks, tables, register/safe, office area, decorations, advertising and there may also be some remodel involved.
Ongoing costs: employees, inventory, utilities, license, maintenance, accountant, lease, advertising
Things to conciser:
What location is best? are you looking for walk-in traffic from a down town area? or do you need parking?
You said there already was a comic book store... how are they doing for business? can your city support two comic book stores? Is the other story busy, if not what will you do differently to attract patrons? If they are busy, why should they become your patrons and not the other?
Be cautious about picking friends for partners! If the business is making money, your friendship will remain... if sales start to slip, you may loose a good friend.
answered Jan 15 '13 at 23:04