Business Case Study; Oil Change Business and Coffee Shop Combo Business Model

Does oil and coffee mix? Well it certainly does for one small business in Needles, CA. They have a successful business now in a rather run-down and in economic decline town. Needles although in California is not doing to well these days, worse off in summer it can reach 117 degrees out their in the middle of no-where desert.

Additionally there is not a lot of business to be had besides the I-40 traffic getting off the freeway for a quick bite to eat or traveling through their town to go to the Casinos in Laughlin or near by Bull Head City, which has recreation areas and good economic growth.

How can some businesses do so well in such run-down areas? Well this discussion came up recently and one gentleman in the area did not even know of the business, yet it still does well. He stated that;

“I ran a wholesale jobber route through the territory you mentioned for 3+ years distributing to c-stores and such. Went OK not really enough mom and pops anymore which were my bread and butter. I never noticed the needles location you mentioned, sounds like a neat idea that might work but needles is such a depressed area.”

Boy you can say that again. Really depressed. They need a complete over haul there. I think part of the problem is the drug issues there, but who would want to live in CA with all the taxes and excess regulations, when you can live in NV or AZ all nearby in that tri-state areas? All the smart people left is my thought?

The oil change place is on the corner across from the Coin-Op, semi full service car wash on the weekends on the road, which goes from Needles to Bull Head City. Can’t miss it, looks somewhat new 3-4 years I guess?

Why do some business succeed like a desert flower in such challenging economic regions? Well it appears to be due to the fact that this business is a family run business; the wife runs the coffee shop area and the husband the oil change bays. There are always people in line.

How do they do it? Word of mouth, customer service and perseverance and now they have built a strong business. You can too, no matter what the circumstances you can over come the odds, beat the heat and make hay. Please consider all this in 2006.