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Old 06-21-2014, 07:34 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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Our alt-weekly did a "Local Edition" a few weeks ago talking about the "rise" of local businesses.

Most of the thriving commercial districts in Oakland are "chain-free zones." And we all know how locally owned businesses have a multiplier effect.

In our case, some is by choice, other is circumstance. About a year before I moved into my neighborhood, a proposed Starbucks caused controversy, people were worried about the impact on the indie coffee shop. It has been a decade now and Starbucks is basically the only chain. We have Peet's, but that is a local chain and it was an early branch. We have a "chain," a local bakery that has 2 other outposts. A Pet Food Express opened up in a former blockbuster space. We didn't have many pet stores so there wasn't a ton of controversy. But BevMo was proposed for the same spot and a petition blocked them, saying it would compete with the indie wine shops on the strip.

Anyway, good article on the economic benefits for growing small businesses. And gives you some insight to our local politics.

http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oaklan...nt?oid=3950925

How is your city doing on the locally-grown business front?
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Old 06-22-2014, 04:01 PM
 
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Here are a couple of buy local group here: SyracuseFirst

Shop Local. Shop Syracuse - ishopsyracuse
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Old 06-22-2014, 05:35 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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ABC: Always Buy Colorado

Google

Colorado Proud
Department of Agriculture - Markets - Colorado Proud

My town has numerous local businesses in its downtown.
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Old 06-22-2014, 06:31 PM
 
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Lots of chains in the outer regions, but they don't seem to do as well in the core neighborhoods. A few years back a cluster of restaurants opened up downtown in an Art Deco building converted from a Firestone tire store: three local restaurants, a nightclub, and a California Pizza Kitchen. Within a year or so, the CPK went out of business but the local businesses were doing great. The owners of two of the other locals joined forces and opened a sports bar in the CPK space which has been doing gangbusters business ever since.

I'm not fanatical about chain stores but lean toward local stores and vote with my dollar. It's relatively easy in terms of coffee, as we have some really absurdly good coffee shops and roasters, and I don't care for the taste of Starbuck's.

In some cases it's a matter of degree. Is a locally based regional chain with 10-20 locations a chain? How about one with 150? Is the chain store willing to adapt their business model to the vibe of the neighborhood, or does their store look exactly like every other one in their network? A "BevMo" recently opened up in my neighborhood, they're a northern California chain with locations throughout the western US. Some folks were unhappy about it, but instead of building a new building they went into a 90 year old former hardware store, paid local artists to create artistic bike racks and a mural, and have a whole section devoted to local beers (and another section with locally made soda pop!) In my mind they're thinking locally for a regional chain--and considering they close earlier than the local liquor store and don't sell cigarettes, I don't think they will force any local stores out of business. On the same note, a 7-11 opened downtown a couple years ago. Responding to neighbor concerns they agreed to not sell booze, but the local hotel/convention associations got upset because they felt like a 7-11 delivered the wrong message, and they hated the idea of late-night business.

I like local business because it gives a sense of where you are, you can develop a more personal relationship with the manufacturer.
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Old 06-22-2014, 07:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
Here are a couple of buy local group here: SyracuseFirst

Shop Local. Shop Syracuse - ishopsyracuse
Scratch the second one. My mistake.
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Old 06-22-2014, 08:22 PM
 
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Starbucks is the biggest poster child for a monopoly I have ever seen. It amazes me how governments, local and federal, have allowed them to so easily and completely dominate the coffee shop business. I guess the anti-trust laws really are worthless.
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Old 06-22-2014, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Paranoid State
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
Starbucks is the biggest poster child for a monopoly I have ever seen. It amazes me how governments, local and federal, have allowed them to so easily and completely dominate the coffee shop business. I guess the anti-trust laws really are worthless.
I don't know about that, but I do know their coffee is mediocre at best. Over-roasted and expensive (char-bucks. Quite flat.

I roast my own coffee beans, and get WAY better results.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,650,120 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
Starbucks is the biggest poster child for a monopoly I have ever seen. It amazes me how governments, local and federal, have allowed them to so easily and completely dominate the coffee shop business. I guess the anti-trust laws really are worthless.
I don't knife if they are a monopoly. We have new local roasters who pop up every month. One has expanded into 2 states, 10 locations and plans 2 shops in japan, though they likely won't grow past a couple dozen stores at best. Not their DNA.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:48 PM
 
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yeah, there are maybe half a dozen Starbucks in my neighborhood, two or three Peets, and a couple of dozen independents. I'm not too worried about the Starbucks.
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Old 06-23-2014, 06:01 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
Starbucks is the biggest poster child for a monopoly I have ever seen. It amazes me how governments, local and federal, have allowed them to so easily and completely dominate the coffee shop business. I guess the anti-trust laws really are worthless.
Starbuck's isn't a monopoly here. It's more independent coffee shops and Dunkin Donuts here.
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