As many of you know, The PHOF bought a vacant lot on the Strip in Las Vegas a couple years ago and planned a NEW 27,000 Sq. Ft. Building. All this was done with the greatest of caution. WE had MOST of the money for the building UP FRONT from years of saving, scrapping and selling the building we owned on Tropicana. The total price of the LAND, BUILDING and a huge new SIGN was 10 million dollars. We thought that it was realistic to expect our existing operations would generate about what they had before we committed to this project, but since then THE WORLD HAS CHANGED!
Covid has wrecked our finances! We were SHUT DOWN for 12 weeks starting in March. We reopened to only about 30 percent of the traffic we had the year before. Locals were hunkered in their bunkers and tourists were just plain staying home. NO weekend trippers from LA. NO tradeshows at the Convention Center. NO foreign guys traveling Route 66 on a Harley.
Total in lost revenue for 2020 over 2019 is $500,000.00
We tried to stay optimistic, thinking that this would pass quickly and we could get back to prior years income, but it has not happened. We had borrowed 1.7 Million before the Covid hit, which with CASH ON HAND, and EXPECTED INCOME left us with a nice cushion to finish.
But we are facing a crisis. We are rapidly running out of the money we set aside to get the job done. We are also facing a deadline to vacate the old building on Trop by MAY 5th. After that date, we have no legal right to stay there. The new owners, "The Car Wash Guys" might let us stay, nut they could ask a huge price and we would have to pay or go.
AS of Jan 1st, the building is 92 percent done. But payment is lagging by 30 days. Figure 350K by the time the contractor is done. We also have to pay for the second half of the sign at some point in the near future. That's going be 270K sometime this summer. Then there is the low voltage, fire and camera items that were NOT part of the contract with the builder. Figure 100 K for that.
SO what to do? We can't STOP construction. That would force the games on Trop literally out on the street. We have to find a way to pay to finish. The builder is dead serious about "He wants get paid". No slack at all there. We also have a refundable bond with the County for 130K that will come back to us when the building is done.
Or we could borrow more money. But again, at what cost.
So the board of Directors sat down over a sack of In n Out burgers and brainstormed. What we came up with is the MASSIVE amount of people who like us. Customer goodwill is all over this project. I spend a large part of every day talking to people who came a very long way to arrive here, and they all say the same thing..... "WE love this place"
A GoFundME campaign cost very little in time or fees, and allows those who want to help to do so. If you have been thinking of us in the past and smiled, how about a tax deductible donation? I am not asking for money you need to live day to day. But if you have a little extra, push the give button.
I will also promise that we will not change the way we operate here. We will still be the same old low rent, penny pinching, stripped down and simple operation we have always been. No payroll. No advertising. No company cars, no trade conferences in luxury locations. Just what we have always been, THE LAST REAL ARCADE IN AMERICA!
I also want to state that we have been trying very hard to raise funds in other ways, not just asking the Pinhead community. We have sold over 20 machines all rebuilt for top dollar that were donated by myself and others. We have even taken on a few outside jobs for cash. We have also stopped helping our charitable partners, something I am looking forward to doing again as soon as we open.
Please also realize that while we have bought a few new games to keep our local customers coming back, we have for the first time passed on many new offerings from Sturn and Gurnsey Joe. Sprinkling in a few Pro games keeps the show new for the folks who live right here is prudent. We have in the past supported anyone stupid enough to try and build something in America, and we will get back to that soon as well.
If you want to make a large contribution, or if you have any other ideas, please contact me directly at email@example.com