The end of February (2017) marks the end of the first year of this experiment called “LAN Party”. Some of you might not realize that it has already been open for a year, but I have been acutely aware of the anniversary’s approach for a few months now. With this comes the decision, “Do I continue to keep the store open for another year?” I won’t leave you all in suspense with lengthy details… I have already informed the Landlord that I will be moving out at the end of the month and had known I would for a few months prior, and suspected/feared this long before…
While I have been happy to dedicate my time and money to this endeavor, it has become apparent that the burden is far heavier than I, alone, can muster the effort to overcome (even with all of the help from friends). Simply put, it would be irresponsible of me to commit to another year of paying rent/bills based solely on hope and well-wishing.
For the technically inclined, after a year of hemorrhaging money, my ROI doubled from an expected 6 years, to 12… and that number will only continue to increase even if we managed to reach a steady state of surpassing the monthly break-even point in the next year or miraculously became wildly popular… like I said, hope and well-wishing doesn’t pay rent.
I know that this will come as a surprise to a lot of people, because I kept it pretty close to the vest. It is a tough pill to swallow, especially after all of the times I said I wouldn’t close after the first year… but I cannot justify staying open to appease a handful of people. Could I have done things differently? Yes. Would I have? … these are completely irrelevant questions… While I don’t look at the project as a mistake, I do see it as a colossal failure. The only thing to do with a failed project is to salvage its parts… make lemonade out of lemons, as they say…
So a reasonable question is, “What will become of LAN Party?” I wish I knew the answer to that incredibly loaded question! I have a few options: Option one is to rebrand, relocate, and/or try to beat a dead horse into seeing light at the end of a tunnel. For reasons previously stated, I have opted out of this scenario. Option two would be to liquidate assets and recover as much costs as possible, change my name, change my face and pretend like this never happened. I exaggerate, but the concept is still the same… this is the easiest option, but I am not quite at this point yet, though the prospect is incredibly tantalizing. Lastly, and my prefered solution, is to keep the LAN Party facebook page and website active and supply the gear to events, tournaments, parties, etc. at various venues. This would require an active community and I would be looking for a lot of outside help with promoting, scheduling, and organizing events. So don’t be shy to leave comments, ask questions, or post suggestions on Facebook or the LAN Party website.
Lastly, in regards to Saturday, Feb. 25th, when we normally would have our scheduled LoL tournament. I can wait to move out until Sunday, but the tournament will be a very bittersweet experience, since it will also be the last day we are open.
I have retained good standing as a business and with my landlord. So, pending the response and input of the local gaming community in the future, I may regain the enthusiasm to reopen the Cyber Cafe, but a big part of that will be decided by the level of interest shown in the coming months.
If anything was unclear, I will be in damage control mode for the next few weeks; answering questions and queries… See You Space Cowboy…
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