Today, prior to tonight’s sneak-peek premiere episode of “Buy This Restaurant,” this Examiner had the opportunity to speak with Keith Simpson directly. As a restaurant owner, Keith sold his first restaurant for three times what he paid for it, and after that he was hooked, and changed his direction. Now as a commercial real estate broker, specializing in restaurant businesses and properties, he is the host of his own show on Food Network that airs on Wednesday nights.
Thanks so much for speaking with me today, Keith and congratulations on your new show, I am very excited to see it and write the recaps for Examiner.com.
Keith: Thanks very much, Diane, it’s a pleasure to speak with you too.
I see you are calling from Sacramento; we are in the middle of a snowstorm in New Jersey.
Keith: I know very well how you feel. I was in Indianapolis last week, and they were going through the same thing.
I am not familiar with your profession, and wondered if your service is something new to the industry?
Keith: I’m primarily a real estate agent, and I do consulting for the buyers of restaurants. This is nothing new. Giving them a clearer picture of their expectations versus the reality of the business will enable them to enter the deal with both eyes open.
How long do your clients have to consult with you after the original sale of their restaurant?
Keith: There is no time limit, I have consulted with several of my clients long after they bought their restaurant. They consult me, prior to renovating and changing other aspects of their business.
Do you feel by offering your service, there would be fewer restaurants in need the services of the shows offering makeovers?
Keith: Absolutely, I have a large client list, and have given advice to several businesses over the years.
Would you ever consider returning to owning a restaurant?
Keith: As for the day-to-day operation of a restaurant, it would have to be an opportunity I could not refuse. However, I would rather be a part-owner on the advisory level.
I see that you had the opportunity to cater to the British Royal Family, did you ever cook for Princess Diana?
Keith: Absolutely. Over my years as a caterer, I had several opportunities to cater to the Royal Family. Many of these were charity events, with 200 to 500 people in attendance. Several at Buckingham Palace, home of the Queen and Prince Philip and at Kensington Palace, when Prince Charles and Princess Diana resided there.
On one of the best days ever, my wife and I were invited to celebrate my 25 years of catering and invited to attend a dinner by the Royal Family. I still have the framed invitation with the royal seal, and it is among my greatest accomplishments.
Well, thanks again Keith, I will be watching and writing about the sneak-preview tonight and look forward to all the episodes of “Buy This Restaurant.”
If you liked what you read, please tune in on Monday nights on Food Network and see what Keith can do for new restaurant owners. Please don’t forget to Subscribe and keep up with Keith and follow this Television Examiner.