Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Need Your Suggestions Friends. Please Help Me! - Revised and Posted

Hi my dear friends! you all know that I have been served with a notice by this building owner to vacate the place by the month of May 2011. I am yet to find a suitable place for my business.

I am running this Cyber Cafe since 2002 and I have a very strong Client Base. I am going to miss them and vice versa. My customers has already started sharing their disappointment.

It is true that I have been hunting for a place since September last year. And I should admit that the search was a good experience in itself. I found that the commercial building owners has become more greedy these days. The office space that is quarter of the size of my present office cost three times the rent that I pay now. And the size of the space equivalent to the present one is only available for Lease for Lakhs of Rupees, which is not affordable. Real Estate is doing really well, I guess.

I was looking for an office space in an around  T.Nagar. Because there is no other Cyber Cafe within 2 kms radius, that can provide a good service such as mine.There is another Cyber Cafe, which is situated within 1km from my Cafe, but customers still prefer to use my Service. Hence the decision to look in and around this T.Nagar.

There were instances, where I found that the owners demanded us to pay the commission to the brokers, even if we were not referred by the brokers. And there were places, that looked like a go-down, without a proper ventilation and no space to fix my Air conditioner. Some offices didn't have a 3phase electricity connection and the owners either refused to share the cost to set up a 3 phase electricity connection or they didn't let us to set up a 3phase electricity connection. Some commercial complexes don't have the rest room facility. I need one, since I stay in my office from 11.00am to 9.30pm every day. Some business centers don't allow any office to work after 7pm. 

So I started looking for a place in Suburban areas. But still didn't succeed.

I should mention about an interesting incident that happened during the search.I once called a mobile number that I took from an advertisement of Free Ads from the "Commercial Space Available" section. When I called him in the morning, he said that he was watching movie and asked me to call him in the afternoon. I called him again in the afternoon at 3pm. He told me that he was busy and asked me to call after 5pm. I did. When I said that I was looking for a place to set up a Cyber Cafe, he told me that it was a residential area and not sure whether it would serve my purpose.I asked his suggestion. He asked me to come and check for myself. He asked me to come to a place near a car service shop, from where he took me to a building. He was a middle aged man and looked like he was boozing all day. I followed him. That was a multi-storey building, which didn't look well in the ground floor itself. A woman was washing clothes on the way to the entrance of the pathway of the ground floor. There were a group of persons who were sitting and chatting in the adjacent room. The alley was dark. I was expecting him to switch on the light. But he just walked passed the alley and I felt suspicious and stopped near the lady who was washing clothes. This man went inside the dark and disappeared. He came back with a torch light in his hand and switched on the torch light and showed me a space below the staircase. I was confused and irritated. He then said that a screen can be used to get some privacy over there in the corner. I was silently bearing my confused and mixed emotions. I wanted to yell at him. At the same time I laughed at my vulnerable position there.And I was also wondering what made this man to call me and show me a space below the staircase, that can only be used to steal a hug or a smooch by the young inmates of that building. My friend Haseem, accompanied me to that place and we both were laughing out louder, all the way to my Cafe, after we left that building.

Few days back one of my friends suggested me to take a up a job, instead of running around the city to find a place.He also reminded me about the struggle that I had to make to get my Cyber Cafe License renewed last year. If those of you who remember reading those blogs, that I have deleted, after my friends suggested to delete it, would also recommend the same, I guess. It was a nightmare for three days to get the Police to inspect my Cyber Cafe to renew my License.

I know that my business is not doing as good as it used to be three years back. But I thought that I can add more services like networking games to pull the young crowd and adding up an eating joint. This will again demand me to pump in more money apart from my expenses that I will have to bear in shifting and setting up. Since everyone can check mails in their mobile these days, I don't get much browsing customers. I get more business from Typing jobs, Print jobs, Scan jobs and cd writing jobs. And then kids come to play in the playstation. When my friend suggested me this, I was tempted to consider the option.

And many of you, know that I also freelance and I have almost 9 overseas clients. And I keep assisting them throughout the year. So I am thinking to take up this job as well as help my online clients, which will be an added advantage for me.

I am going to preserve my Computer Cabins for future use. I shall gift the computers to my 5yr old niece and other kids, who can use it for their studies. I shall also gift the Playstation to my nephew and niece.

Now, I need your suggestion, my dear friends. What would you suggest? Would you suggest me to take up this job, right now? Or would you want me to continue with my Cyber Cafe business? Please help me to take a decision.

Deep into my heart, I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur. Owner of atleast a small enterprise, if not a big one. I shall wait until I find myself financially sound to start an enterprise again to run it successfully for the rest of my life.

P.S. I have revised this post.

Luv u all
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