Dave Jurena and Tim Talsky, friends and business partners, founded the Soup Kitchen in Milwaukee in 2004. They changed their name to The Soup Market and established five sites in the Milwaukee region during their first decade of operation. Tim suddenly died away, leaving Dave to manage the firm alone, despite the fact that the business was doing well and continuing to expand.
Tim had been in charge of the company’s finances, and without him, Dave wouldn’t be able to grow the company any further. With sales and earnings on the decline, Dave turned to Marcus Lemonis and The Profit for assistance in reviving the company and propelling it forward.
The Profitable Soup Market
Episode 3 of Season 4 of The Profit
When Marcus first walked into The Soup Market, he saw a restaurant that had not invested much time or money in its design or long-term planning. The soup is delicious, but it’s very filling. Dave had expanded the soup choices to 200 recipe variations, but no sales data was maintained for the company.
The name Grace was mentioned during the first discussions, but no one was prepared to discuss her or her position in the business. Marcus had the sense she was working as a shadow manager in the background of Dave’s day-to-day management responsibilities.
The business’s operations did not seem to have much consistency, with workers’ responsibilities shifting and an inconsistent appearance and feel across the board. The soup recipes seemed to be the only aspect of the company that remained constant across all locations.
Marcus tries to figure out who Grace is and what she has to do with The Soup Market. Dave’s wife seems to keep her away from the day-to-day activities. Dave was adamant about not giving Marcus any additional information about her. Marcus believed it was his responsibility to know everyone involved in the company, therefore he pushed Dave to reveal Grace’s tale. Dave got upset with the line of inquiry and walked away, removing his microphone. When Marcus is able to contact Dave later, he discovers that Grace is a former employee of The Soup Market who has been instructed to seek employment elsewhere. Marcus was concerned since it was still unclear if Grace was still working at The Soup Market.
While Marcus was critical of their accounting and data collecting techniques, there was no disputing that The Soup Market was profitable, with $1.8 million in sales, just $85,000 in debt, and a $100,000 obligation from Tim’s inheritance. Despite the solid statistics, Marcus believes that by better managing the price structure and utilizing cheaper, fresher components, profit margins could easily be raised from the current 50% to about 70%. Marcus thinks that by making these adjustments, The Soup Market will be able to earn an additional $330,000 in revenue.
Marcus offers Dave $315,000 in return for 50% ownership of his firm and full control of its operations.
Marcus discusses the necessity for healthier soup choices as part of his ambitions to revamp the store in order to make it more lucrative. He and Dave go to a nutritional analysis lab to discover how harmful the soups from The Soup Market are. According to the test findings, a single serving of the soup contains about 70% of the daily required quantity. Dave takes issue with this, saying that he would sooner get rid of his recipes than change his restaurant’s economic model to include “healthcare.”
Dean Lyden, a longstanding friend of The Profit, visited with the team to discuss design improvements. Dave is reluctant to the modifications Dean recommends, which irritates Marcus to the point that he chooses to meet with Kevin, who introduces himself as the Operations Manager of The Soup Market. Grace comes in and takes a position behind the bar as Marcus and Kevin begin to converse. Grace seems to be apprehensive while speaking with Marcus, but it is later revealed that she is the company’s Operations Manager. Grace has created some marital problems for Dave and his wife, thus concealment is necessary.
Marcus went back to Dave for additional information about this strange and uncomfortable scenario. Marcus discovers that Grace worked for the company and had remained on following Tim’s tragic death. She was a hard worker with a strong business sense, but Dave had emotions for her, which he shared with his wife. Marcus was pleased to learn the truth, but he was still uncomfortable about the environment it had generated across the company’s operations.
With the discovery of the Grace tale behind him, Dave realizes the necessity of offering higher-quality, healthier options, and more buying options. Marcus was even served a wonderful, nutritious, Latin-inspired soup by Dave.
Two weeks later, The Soup Market debuted a new appearance and feel, which Marcus describes as a “rustic public market” that replaces the cafeteria-like atmosphere it had before. To maintain track of sales and improve profit margins, modern business management tools and procedures were introduced. The modifications were well received by both customers and workers, and Marcus was delighted with the development.
Grace is standing outside the shop, not inside with the rest of the employees, as Marcus observes. Grace and Dave have a heated argument that dampens the atmosphere and makes everyone uncomfortable.
Grace is dismissed a few weeks later and taken from the premises by police. Following that, Dave filed a suit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), throwing the company into disarray. When Marcus comes for a follow-up, the store’s outside is in disarray. Marcus pulls out of the transaction after another altercation with Dave, losing his $100,000 investment in the process.
What Happened After The Profit: The Soup Market
After the program aired, the Soup Market experienced an uptick in sales, and consumers appeared to like the improvements Marcus helped make. They were seeing 3.5 to 4-star reviews on the internet.
Unfortunately, the good fortune did not continue long. The incident caused a decrease in ratings and a reaction on the company’s social media sites, resulting in the closure of their Facebook page.
Grace, the story’s most fascinating character, seems to have moved on from the drama of The Soup Market. While she awaits the outcome of her lawsuit, she has relocated to California and settled down.
The Soup Market is still going strong in Milwaukee, with five locations.
The material in this post is given only for educational purposes; Royal Pitch is not connected with The Soup Market, The Profit, or any of its subsidiaries.
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