The Oxford, Ohio-based store which opened its doors in the Village five years ago, is selling its store as a “turnkey business.”
Juniper, the boutique store in the Village, announced mid-April its intentions of selling the store, and while still on the lookout, has already started discussions with interested buyers.
“We’re disappointed that we have to close, but we just haven’t made enough money to make it worthwhile,” said Peter Lask, who along with his wife Tamar owns the store. “The store has always turned a profit, but it isn’t enough to justify the existence of the store for us.”
Lask said he and his wife who live in Oxford, haven’t been able to devote enough time to the Muncie store. He said if someone could supervise in Muncie could be at the store a few times a week, more things — like better marketing — could have been done to help operate the store better.
As of now, however, they plan on selling the store intact for any future owner to occupy.
“We’re trying to find someone who wants to buy the thing lock, stock and barrel — with all the furnishings inside,” Lask said. “It’s a really pretty store and has really nice furnishings.”
The business closed down its West Lafayette, Indiana, store located near Purdue University early this year. He said lack of parking space after the city remodeled the street in front of the store was the reason for it closing.
Lask said while there’s nothing “intrinsically wrong” with the Village as a location, the city could do more to promote the area similar to the way downtown Muncie is marketed and attract more business to the area.
“I think it is [a] nice, close to campus, little business district that could, with the proper cooperation of the city and with Ball State … draw more business into the Village,” he said.
Delaney Coras, senior business administration major and employee at Juniper, said businesses near the university was one of the reasons she decided to join Ball State and them closing down was “detrimental to incoming students.”
“I don’t think it really has to do with the population or anything,” Coras said about the recent closure of businesses in the Village. “I just feel as if these businesses are closing for their own individual reasons.”
Apart from trying to find a new job, Coras said she’d miss the customers and her fellow employees now that the business is closing.
“It’s just a very kind of easy going job,” she said. “It’s been really nice. It has its perks for sure … and I’m really sad we’re going out of business.”
Coras also said more marketing and events in the Village could help bring more business to the area.
Lask said there has been several parties interested in buying out the business. He also encouraged them to use gift cards and store credit before they close.
“If someone buys it and wants to take it over sooner, then we’ll be out sooner. Otherwise our lease is up at the end of July,” he said.
Contact Rohith Rao with comments at email@example.com or on Twitter @RaoReports.