Journey of a Restaurant Buyer: Lessons in Business and Growth

Jared W. Johnson Podcast

Welcome to the world of restaurant acquisitions, where dreams are realized, challenges are faced, and success is earned. In this interview, we dive deep into the journey of restaurant buyer and passionate entrepreneur, Jeptune Lupiter. From his background in the industry to the process of buying a business, Jeptune shares valuable insights and lessons that can inspire and guide aspiring buyers and sellers.

The Path to Entrepreneurship

Jeptune’s journey began in Utah, where he grew up and developed a love for the restaurant business. After leaving college to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams, he joined a family member in starting a small Mexican restaurant called Charlo Loco. Through hard work and dedication, they successfully expanded the business, eventually buying out a neighboring Chinese restaurant and transforming it into a thriving establishment.

The Power of Partnerships

One of the key lessons Jeptune learned early on was the importance of partnerships. When he joined the Habaneros brand in Las Vegas, he saw an opportunity to grow their restaurants through franchising. Instead of seeking outside investors, Jeptune proposed offering the opportunity to their skilled cooks, providing them with the chance to become franchisees. This innovative approach not only helped the brand expand rapidly but also empowered individuals who may not have had the means to start their own businesses.

A Buyer’s Search for the Perfect Business

When it came time for Jeptune to venture out on his own, he turned to online platforms like BizBuySell to find potential businesses to purchase. After contacting various brokers and exploring different listings, he came across a restaurant that caught his attention. The location, the concept, and the quality of the food all resonated with him. Despite some initial concerns about the financials, Jeptune decided to make an offer and was thrilled when it was accepted.

The process of buying a business is not without its challenges. Jeptune encountered a hurdle when it came to verifying his down payment, as he had kept a significant amount of cash at home. This led to a last-minute scramble to find a solution, ultimately involving a family member gifting him the funds. Jeptune emphasizes the importance of properly documenting finances and being transparent with lenders to avoid such complications.

Ownership Transition and Beyond

Once the acquisition was finalized, Jeptune focused on ensuring a smooth transition. He retained the existing staff and observed the operations closely, making minimal changes in the first month. However, he plans to grow the business and potentially expand to multiple locations in the future. Jeptune’s goal is to provide exceptional food and service to customers while creating opportunities for his employees and fellow entrepreneurs.

Lessons Learned and Future Outlook

Reflecting on his journey, Jeptune shares valuable advice for aspiring business buyers. He emphasizes the importance of seasoning funds in a bank account to facilitate the verification process. Additionally, he highlights the significance of open communication with lenders, disclosing any potential issues or challenges upfront. Jeptune’s mentor, Dan Pena, inspires him to maintain laser-like focus and embrace the challenges that come with entrepreneurship.

In conclusion, Jeptune’s story is a testament to the power of passion, perseverance, and partnerships in the world of business acquisitions. His journey serves as a valuable guide for those looking to enter the restaurant industry or any other field. By learning from his experiences and applying the lessons he shares, aspiring entrepreneurs can navigate the acquisition process with confidence and set themselves up for success in the ever-evolving world of business.


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DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in this program are my own and/or those of my guests. They do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of my employer.