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He made a name for themselves by opening their first bar in New York City in 1991 which became one of the city's.
Hottest night spots.
That -- -- group owns and operates more than 27 locations worldwide.
And that's why they -- tonight -- -- -- spotlight although they're not small.
When other -- across the country shutting their doors the Gerber group is expanding so what's the magic behind their success let's ask -- -- got every joins us now.
Scott thanks for being -- did you -- your brother Randy started this company with one bar.
Right and at the time you're working for Ian Schrager at the parent not -- correct so.
What was it that one -- you want to open it let's start with that one major one open a -- you were in the hotel business.
Well I think a lot of people -- to go to the bar business it sounds like a fun idea so originally that's what we thought about it would be fun.
And we hope that the bar is set leading trader that was hit the Paramount and -- is the great success and we realize that we could probably turn it into a business so we did.
That was hit the Paramount had another opportunity in Los Angeles we went and its -- Bart Mondrian.
And started building a business and said.
You can make money doing this and if you focus on the business he can be very successful.
So when did Starwood Hotels -- you basically.
-- and when sorrow had perished -- wanted to start -- boutique hotel company that would be I guess institutionalized.
And he tried to by Ian Schrager hotels.
And at the time he -- in had -- like create this great boutique hotel brand and he said.
Hires an architect.
Credit Gerber is to do bars and I'll run the hotels so when that started they tried to put together this merger it didn't work -- in the came to us -- I'm gonna start this -- -- brand what did you do with us and at that point we had to make a decision -- to stay with in order goes -- And we like the proposal from starter to us to create the W brand and what -- -- like to.
-- Starwood owns is -- -- hotels -- of people understanding you're in a fair amount of them yes what is it about.
The boutique bar that has lasted because man ours come and go well you know lounge is -- and go what is the -- parody ads.
We've focused very much on our staff I mean at the end of the day it's the people that are working in -- -- the great service hospitality I mean also that could face the same in every bar.
So we have to figure out ways to differentiate ourselves we do not want to be trendy.
We want to be around for a long time and we've been fortunate enough to be around for a long time.
We have great design and -- bars it's different from location to location we are very focused on our music selection you don't want -- and -- always hear you know top forty.
And we've been able to create an eclectic mix of customers from the hotel guests but also encompassing the locals and people that are visiting New York or any of our locations.
-- that maybe aren't just staying in -- hotel.
Well why not keep the -- name with all of them.
Because the stone rose has popped up I mean you have under -- lots of a bunch of different names why not keep it in almost a must let the franchise keep it out there.
We felt like different locations required a little bit of a different concept you don't want -- to every one of our bars and say it looks like a whiskey bar under bar at the W and union square is it and down so far into the basement.
So it's a little bit different if you -- -- stone -- -- -- Time Warner Center it's got incredible views of Central -- -- everything he kind of wants to adapt to.
What the market is to a certain degree and also to the hotel partner that we may be partners in -- the design of the -- Telus.
But -- about the market you are linked to these hotels and therefore very closely linked to the -- industry.
Challenged you suffered during this recession how did that affect you in your bottom line.
Obviously it affected us you know a little bit but like I said before our business is not just based upon the people that are staying in that hotel we really -- cultivated a great local following.
And people that are visiting you know they can be working nearby in coming for drinks.
Afterwards -- -- coming in with friends so we really are not solely reliant on the hotel business and interestingly enough.
As a hotel market really got crushed our business got impacted a little bit but nowhere near as badly as they become more.
Because -- -- locals are coming as well to these places yes lets out a little bit about commodity costs you do serve food.
Alcohol prices are going up grain prices are going up all that affects you and your input costs how have you been able to manage that.
You know there's a very very big profit margin in -- to begin itself.
We can absorb these small increases in our costs and we try not to pass them along very much to our customer.
Obviously at times we do it gets you know we do have to pass along a bit of a price increase.
But I think that.
The experience that you get when you're in -- bars is worth you know maybe a little bit of a price increase.
We don't believe in the fact that we have a captive audience in the hotel so we should charge exorbitant prices.
It's not about -- -- all the time as a potentially attacks coming in alcohol and certain places.
That could be another bit of stuff back to the bottom line is -- I mean obviously at times you know if our cost increase certain that we are going to have to pass it along a little bit to our customer but.
We fight it as much as we can.
Now that I'm I understand it I've been in Samir -- atmosphere is different and I think -- that lets talk about international Santander Chile just opened three new -- -- in Madrid what's next.
We're currently looking in Paris we're looking -- in Canada in Toronto we start looking a little bit over in occasion that we have not been over there yet.
There's still a lot of markets for us in the United States as well so we're looking at places like you know San Francisco -- open another bar we're looking in Washington DC you know we'll do a few more in New York.
But there's really a lot of opportunities whether they are we have a lot of different hotel partners and the hotel businesses.
Coming back pretty well right now so.
As a hotel business comes back they want us into their properties.
Please stay with -- -- tries to handle and we do some standalone properties and nutrients and stone -- at the Time -- -- or whiskey park period -- building on Central Park south.
But we do like the combination of being with hotels -- -- we have some built in clientele which is a nice base.
And then we can build upon that make it an interesting combination that you guys have certainly made it work 27 and your bell and lord comes -- -- thank you for being asked thank you very much.
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