It has been a while since our last blog post. I hope everyone had a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season. As for Pam and I, we have spent much of the time since our last update contemplating the future of the Malted Meeple, which has been a difficult and emotional process.
A little less than a year ago, The Malted Meeple was preparing to celebrate our fifth year in operations. On the business side, we were wrapping up our initial five year plan. After a significant investment of time, money and energy, the Meeple was right where we wanted it to be. Renovations of our new building were complete, our newest business line was up and running, and our operations were not only on track financially, but ahead of projections.
Then came the coronavirus.
The very day after our fifth birthday celebration, the pandemic forced us to temporarily cease operations. That initial shutdown lasted two months. Although operations resumed in May, they never came close to pre-pandemic levels. Throughout the spring and summer, we were operating at less than 25% capacity. Before anyone is tempted to point fingers, we do not blame our reduced traffic on government restrictions or regulations – during this period we rarely filled even our reduced socially distanced capacity. The simple truth is that many people were – and still are – uncomfortable venturing out during a pandemic, which of course is a completely reasonable position.
We are certainly not the only company which has been affected by this situation, although given the nature of the Meeple it may have hit us harder than many. Unfortunately, when a business designed to encourage social interaction meets a pandemic which requires social distancing, something has to give.
Although it pains me to say it, I am announcing today that The Malted Meeple will not be reopening. We are currently pursuing a variety of options for the future of the Meeple, from simple liquidation to the sale of the business to someone with the time, energy and passion to reenergize it once life resumes some semblance of normalcy.
Since its initial conception, The Malted Meeple has been a part of our family. Whatever the ultimate fate of the business, both Pam and I would like to thank each and every one of you who have joined us in the Malted Meeple family over the years, whether as guests, business partners or team members. We wish you all the best, and hope to see you again soon.