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tv   The Profit  CNBC  March 31, 2019 5:00am-6:00am EDT

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they became vertically integrated, and they've picked up a ton of margin. it's a green cash machine. i think i'm gonna put my green sweater on again just... amber: oh, you should, for sure. i'm surprised you didn't wear one today. lemonis: [ laughs ] lemonis: what coffee? okay, where's your coffee? first of all, i'm not drinking coffee out of this mug. amber: why? lemonis: because. amber: you know, you're so high-maintenance. lemonis: no, what it is, is that because, "oh, i don't want to show the logo on the cup." amber: seriously? lemonis: i don't like it that much, though. amber: well, you drink it now. lemonis: i do now. amber: why didn't you drink it before? lemonis: i always felt that i was always hyper, and i thought, "who in the world wants me injected with caffeine?" amber: so have decaf. lemonis: that's what i do. amber: oh. lemonis: yeah, my coffee's decaf, but then i look like i'm hip by drinking coffee. amber: your goat milk that you like now. such an ass[bleep] he ordered goat milk yesterday. lemonis: excuse me. it's oat milk. amber: oh, sorry. that's even worse. lemonis: can we get started with the episode? amber: yes, please. lemonis: in the last 5 years, i've visited over 70 businesses.
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it's delicious. and i've traveled the country trying to fix the people... christina: i don't want to be that person that cries on tape. lemonis: ...fix the process... i don't think you guys have any idea what's in your inventory. holy [bleep] ...and create a few products... welcome to your new store. man: oh, my god. channa: i owe my life to this company. lemonis: that is the reason that i'm here. i spend hundreds of days a year working on these companies. why didn't you do it? man: i thought that we did. lemonis: holy [bleep] but we can't always fit everything i'm thinking into the show. so tonight i'm gonna give you an inside look at an episode from season 2 -- west end coffee. tell me the story of how you met. john: she became friends with my wife. we would hang out together. lemonis: there was like a triangle thing going on? john: sort of, yes. cohorts in crime, maybe. i don't know. lemonis: [ laughs ] amber: it's so funny to see you uncomfortable. lemonis: i'm there to help their business. we're talking about coffee. of course i need to know that the three of them were having sex together. over the next hour, i'm gonna take you behind the scenes
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to share with you what i was actually thinking during filming... we shook hands. john: yes, sir. lemonis: and it meant nothing. poof. gone. john: no, that's not true. lemonis: but you were gonna go list the business. i think john wanted to do a deal with me, but he didn't want to be stuck with her. and he probably was hedging his bets a little bit, like, what if the deal with me fell apart. ...share some secrets... john: i want you gone. becky: no. i can work with you. i've always said i can work with you. amber: you know how we're shooting this? we're shooting this through the glass, and they don't know we're filming. lemonis: ...and give you an honest assessment of my decisions. john: that's valuing our business at less than $400,000. lemonis: i put the wild-card discount. if you guys blow this place up, i can mitigate my losses. the only reason that i made an offer is 'cause i felt like i could work all that out. this was back when i thought i could get people to do things that they won't do. my name is marcus lemonis, and this is an inside look. man: "b" rolling, "b" rolling.
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audio speed. lemonis: so tonight, we're gonna bring you a fun episode from season 2. let's try to do it together for the first time. amber: we're gonna talk together in unison? lemonis: yeah. amber: tonight on -- lemonis: you have to wait for me. amber: oh. both: tonight... lemonis: we're gonna bring you an inside look from a fun episode. you're not talking. amber: i -- you -- lemonis: all right, listen, be quiet. tonight we're gonna bring you an inside look from a very fun episode from season 2. it's in greenville, south carolina, one of my favorite cities. west end coffee. and i didn't even like coffee at the time. west end coffee provides freshly roasted gourmet coffee to local restaurants and specialty shops. co-owners becky schramm and john brown were in a relationship when they bought west end coffee for $500,000 in 2012. but a year later, their relationship ended in a nasty breakup, and trouble started brewing at the business. john: you're ridiculous. you don't know what you're doing.
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lemonis: and their employees are constantly caught in the middle. man: i think they're both good people. i just think they don't like each other. lemonis: with their business relationship strained and their losses mounting, time is running out. there's a huge market for freshly roasted gourmet coffee. if i can just get john and becky to put their claws away, we'll be making money in no time. bryan: welcome to another day in the west end. ♪ lemonis: [ inhales deeply ] smells good. pause. look at my belt. amber: i know, the "h" belt. when you were trying to be relatable to america, what made you think that, like, popping out in, like, a hermès belt would be... lemonis: that was the belt that i wore. it's not like i had a stylist dressing me for these episodes. clearly. amber: clearly. [ laughs ] lemonis: [ sniffing ] ahh. ahh! amber: ahh! john: if you think you're so [bleep] great, go do it. becky: that's why i'm here. john: right. you want him to resolve our personal issues. that's what you want.
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becky: i'm worried about the business, not our personal issues. lemonis: no, they wanted me to resolve their personal issues. there's two things that i found when i walked into west end -- the smell of great coffee, which was nice, and the cursing -- not so nice. hi, there. becky: hello. lemonis: i'm marcus. becky: i'm becky. lemonis: becky, nice to meet you. becky: very nice meeting you. john: marcus, privilege. john brown. lemonis: john, nice to meet you. john: nice to meet you, sir. becky: thank you for coming. lemonis: the smell when you walk in here is awesome. john: it is. lemonis: it was pretty good. why don't we take a look around? john: please. please. this is our storefront. we have an extremely loyal customer base. people are coming in buying 7, 8, 9, 12 bags of coffee. becky: we're in whole foods and earth fare and fresh market, as well, so they can just pick it up at the grocery store. lemonis: oh, you are? john: yes. lemonis: that's nice. who got that account? becky: the previous owner. john: previous owner. lemonis: and what will the entire business do? john: we did $840,000 last year. lemonis: how much profit? john: i want to say last year, it was $40,000 at the most.
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okay. this is our production area. lemonis: pause. the reason that the operation looked as legit as it did is because they actually bought the business from somebody else. when you invest in a small business, that's, you know, on death's doorstep or really struggling, it's almost like you're being given something to fix as opposed to something to create. and in my opinion, that's the reason i don't do a lot of it. starting a business from scratch is way harder than repairing something that's broken. amber: right. lemonis: way harder. becky: that's green. that's cooked. lemonis: and so this is what the seeds look like. john: that's the seeds. coffee seed. lemonis: and so there's a misnomer when people say "coffee bean." john: it's a little green fruit that turns red when it's ripe, ready to be picked. lemonis: but it tastes nothing like coffee. john: no. becky: no. amber: why are you investing in a coffee shop? lemonis: the margins are good, and it's a relatable product. even if i wasn't a connoisseur of it, i knew that 90% of america was. amber: and you haven't even tried the coffee. lemonis: i know, but i don't like coffee.
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amber: but don't you have to like something in order to invest in it? lemonis: it's like me investing in women's clothes. i don't wear them. amber: [ laughing ] you should. lemonis: how did you learn how to roast coffee? becky: we didn't. lemonis: why haven't you learned? john: just haven't had the time. lemonis: why haven't you learned? becky: um...i mean -- lemonis: i mean, this is the whole business. both: it is. lemonis: you should really learn how to do that. it would be like owning a repair shop and not knowing how to change the oil. john: you're right. becky: that's true. lemonis: roasting coffee is the single most important process of this company. everybody should know how to do it. becky: we got the master roaster when we bought it. he stuck around. he only works one to two days. lemonis: it is kind of funny that i'm standing there eating the beans as if they're a snack. amber: i know. they probably taste so gross. becky: i got my son to start learning to roast. marcus, this is my son, bryan. bryan, marcus. lemonis: how are you? really nice to meet you. how long have you been doing this? bryan: about two months. maybe a little bit longer. lemonis: you like it? bryan: uh, yeah.
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becky: [ laughs ] you can tell the truth, honey. bryan: it's a challenge sometimes, but it's fun. lemonis: what's the challenge? bryan: um, the dynamics between them. i mean... lemonis: the dynamics between them are interesting? bryan: very interesting. lemonis: the coffee's awesome. bryan: it's great. lemonis: what's a machine like this cost? john: used, about $60,000. brand-new, about double that. lemonis: let's crank this thing up. i want to see how it works. i'm fascinated by it. how quickly can you get product? john: three to four days. lemonis: because you're going through a distributor. john: yes. lemonis: and do you know how much margin you're losing through that distribution? between going to the actual farm to here? john: i do not. lemonis: you do not. the fact that john hasn't taken the time to find out how to improve margin is troubling to me. how many pounds do you roast a year today? john: a little over 100,000 pounds. lemonis: i always look for ways to save money. if we could just pick up 30 cents a pound, over 100,000 pounds, that's $30,000 a year.
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if you ran this like a tight machine with two shifts using every square inch of the place, what's the maximum you could roast in a week? john: probably around 7,000 pounds. lemonis: so that's about 364,000 pounds a year. you're only producing 33% of the capacity of this facility. west end coffee roasts over 100,000 pounds of coffee a year and generates about $840,000 of revenue, but it's highly unproductive, operating at only 33% of their total capacity. if they would get sales in line, the same facility with the same equipment and the same labor could generate over 360,000 pounds of coffee, yielding them over $3 million in sales. with 50% margins, that's why this is an attractive business. i'm not a big coffee drinker. john: okay. lemonis: i like coffee ice cream. does that count? becky: yes. john: sure. becky: it might be a little bit strong for you. john: and we make it pretty strong.
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lemonis: oh, it's good. john: but it's good. lemonis: yeah, but it's really good. john: and it's fresh. lemonis: it's obvious that they have a good product, and becky's son bryan shows me that the employees are motivated and they enjoy their work. but the tension between john and becky could be the reason this business is really struggling. tell me the story of how you met. john: she became friends with my wife. we would hang out together. my wife and i -- my ex-wife and i had problems. i went to my wife, and i said, "if you want to try to work this out, you need to get rid of becky." lemonis: why did you want her to get rid of becky? john: so that my ex-wife and i could work it out. we were like an inner circle. there was like the three of us that were, you know... lemonis: y'all were having, like, a -- there was like a triangle thing going on? john: sort of, yes. lemonis: okay. john: yes. cohorts in crime, maybe. i don't know. lemonis: [ laughs ] [ laughing ] let me check out these recipes. amber: it's so funny to see you uncomfortable sometimes. lemonis: i wasn't uncomfortable. amber: yes, you were. lemonis: i was totally fine with the fact that they were telling me that the three of them were having sex together. it wasn't odd.
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we're -- i'm there to help their business. we're talking about coffee. of course i need to know that you had another woman living in your house and that's what screwed up your relationship. that's part of due diligence. amber: the point is, it's just good -- it's characters that are fun to watch because they just say stuff off the cuff that's crazy. lemonis: do you remember the only time that you and i have ever agreed about infographics in the entire show was coming right now. amber: oh, really? you remember that? lemonis: yeah. watch, watch. this is a classic case of tmi. i don't know what sort of graph or chart we could put up for this one, but i think we should move on. so, how many total employees? john: seven, counting us. becky: we have bryan as a roaster. we have brandon who does repairs. john: let's go back to bryan for just a minute. i had a plan. she came in, overrode it, put him in there. becky: he wanted to interview a guy that worked at home depot in the garden department. john: i wanted to interview anybody that might have been qualified. becky: whereas bryan at least knows how we run our business. lemonis: this is how you guys coexist all the time? john: all the time. lemonis: how does it make the employees feel? john: like [bleep] lemonis: and when you guys were together in a relationship,
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was it normal? becky: not since we got here. this kind of really was the downfall. lemonis: can the relationship be repaired if you're not working together? john: i no longer want to be with her. i'm looking for a wife eventually. becky: there's news, 'cause he told me he was never getting married again. john: i told you i was never gonna marry you. [ both laugh ] lemonis: i mean... amber: it's just funny. lemonis: it was funny, kind of. it wasn't funny to actually be in the middle of it, because you don't ever want to see people be downright mean. amber: right. john: that's valuing our business at less than $400,000. lemonis: i put the wild-card discount. the only reason that i made an offer is 'cause i felt like i could work all that out. this was back when i thought i could get people to do things that they won't do.
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whether it's more jaw droppers, standing o's upon standing o's or tv's biggest show stoppers. get more into what you're into. get ready to watch with xfinity x1 or the xfinity stream app. xfinity watchathon week. free starting april 8th. boop! your tone is very brown. lemonis: your tone is off. man: having a hard time fixing it. amber: who's brown, me? lemonis: me, 'cause i'm more tan. amber: oh, yeah, 'cause he fake bakes. lemonis: well, it's an interesting place. how do you work in this environment? i mean, i only got a dose of it. man: very carefully. bryan: it's been calm today. lemonis: today's been calm? man: today's been calm. bryan: nice and calm. man: mm-hmm. if they ever get on the same page, they can do a lot. it's just...hate.
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hate and mistrust. lemonis: it's interesting to me that the employees function at such a high rate despite the negativity coming from john and becky. i need to dig into the structure of their business relationship to find out if it's the dysfunction that's holding this business back. how's the equity allocated between -- 50/50? john: i'm 82, and she's 18. lemonis: how much money did you actually give to the seller? becky: $499,000. lemonis: $499,000? john: yes. lemonis: and how much of cash did you put in? john: cash out of my pocket was $12,500. becky's was $77,000 cash. lemonis: $77,000 came from you, $12,500 came from you personally. becky: $100,000 from the bank. lemonis: so that's $200,000, about, right now. and where did the other $300,000 come from? becky: his 401 that got rolled over into the retirement pension plan, which then is a stockholder, shareholder. lemonis: becky came up with $77,000 in cash. john came up with $12,500 in cash. they received a $100,000 bank loan, and the remaining $300,000
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came from john's 401(k) retirement plan. if you look at the numbers literally, becky would actually only own 18% and john 82%, but they're acting like it's a 50/50 partnership. do you pay yourselves? john: we have only taken a $5,000 officer salary once in those two years. i was living, like, off of savings, and that's pretty much depleted. lemonis: whoa. john: yeah. lemonis: and why haven't you listed it? becky: i don't want to sell. lemonis: do you want to sell it? john: i really don't, but i cannot continue for her to control my money. lemonis: how does she control your money? john: she has the ultimate shareholder voting majority. lemonis: how does that work? john: because she's a director on that qualified pension plan. my mistake. becky: all i did was sign. john: she could fire me as ceo and president if there was a shareholders' meeting. lemonis: do you understand what happened? amber: no, not really. lemonis: okay, stop. so we've established the way the money came into the company. but becky was listed as a director of that 401(k) plan.
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and when the plan ended up being an equity investor in the business, she ended up actually having the voting rights of his plan and his money. it would be like me having voting rights over your business. i didn't pay for it, and you didn't agree to it. amber: right. lemonis: you guys made this investment together. you're either gonna go forward together or you're gonna burn together. i want to do business with people that will always do the right thing without conditions. but i just can't understand it. i need you to explain to me again why it is that you think it's okay that accidentally, you secured a right that gives you the ability to fire him from this business when you only put in 20% of all the money. becky: he has threatened to fire me, and to me, that's the only thing that i have to hang on to.
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lemonis: you are taking his ability to control his destiny, which is what i think is driving the anger and the hate and the mistrust. becky: no question. lemonis: and you know it, and you're using it as a weapon. becky: it was a twist of fate, for sure. lemonis: it was an accident. becky: i don't think -- lemonis: it was an accident. becky: totally. lemonis: and so are you willing to say to him, "i'm willing to take the chance, john, to fix this issue, but i have something that i shouldn't, and i'm gonna give it back"? are you prepared to do that? what would you do if you were her? amber: i wouldn't give it back. lemonis: why? amber: because it's the only leverage i have. i have nothing else besides that. lemonis: but the leverage that you have you shouldn't have. you got it accidentally. amber: accidents happen. lemonis: [ laughs ] are you willing to say to him, "i'm willing to give it back to you"? are you prepared to do that?
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becky: i am. lemonis: right now? becky: sure. john: that would go a really long ways, 'cause you hit the nail right on the head. that is what is causing the hurt and the anger and the frustration. lemonis: and the mistrust. john: and the mistrust. absolutely. lemonis: i'm all about getting this business from a million to $5 million or $6 million. the product is good. i believe that i can create sales and generate revenue that you guys couldn't, and i feel like i bring that to the table. so, here's my offer. john: okay. lemonis: i'm willing to put up $200,000 for 51% of the business. $200,000 gives you the ability to buy inventory that you don't have today. john: i'm just not sure that $200,000's enough. i mean, that's valuing our business at less than $400,000. lemonis: i put the wild-card discount. john: so that's the discount price. lemonis: i have to discount it 'cause i have to mitigate my risk. and so the wild card in this situation is you guys. if you guys destroy and blow this place up, i can mitigate my losses.
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amber: stop. you valued the business less because their relationship was so tumultuous. lemonis: yeah, i mean, look, you guys are gonna burn this place to the ground. you were already heading down a trend line that was less than the previous year. so on paper, your revenue is down. and the only reason that i made an offer is 'cause i felt like i could work all that out. this was back when i thought i could get people to do things that they won't do. people can change, but they have to actually make the change. i can't make them. amber: they have to want to change, yeah. john: take a few minutes to talk about it, or... lemonis: sure. john: yeah. like he said, the big thing is, we have to start fresh, regain that trust and respect for each other. becky: i agree. this is a good business. there's money here. let's get out of our own damn way. john: okay. lemonis: okay? john: yes, sir. lemonis: i was like, "all right." amber: i'm convinced. lemonis: i was, too.
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do we have a deal? becky: we have a deal. john: we have a deal. thank you, marcus. lemonis: great. we have a lot to do. because i'm gonna grow volume, i need to know exactly what it costs to make a bag of coffee. how much is the clip? john: 8 cents. lemonis: how much is the bag? john: 31. lemonis: so, we're at 39 now. john: 39. plus the label's gonna be 3. lemonis: so that's 42 cents. how much is the raw bean? john: let's say, on average, $3. lemonis: that takes us to $3.42. what else needs to go into there to get a finished product? john: labor. lemonis: take me to how much the labor is. john: let's figure 12. lemonis: 12 cents? john: yeah. right. lemonis: so it costs $3.54. and what do we sell a one-pound bag for? john: $12. lemonis: that margin's killer. now that i know what it costs, i want to understand the process to package the coffee. what are we doing here? man: just filling these bags. lemonis: how do you weigh it out? man: this machine actually weighs it out for me. lemonis: so, let's see. so, you go right here? man: yeah. not too bad. [ machine hisses ]
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amber: [ laughs ] [ both laugh ] man: rookie! lemonis: all right. rookie mistake. hey. becky: hello. lemonis: how are you? hey, i wanted to let you know that at 3:30, we're meeting with the owner of larkin's and the head chef. larkin's is one of the most popular restaurant chains in all of south carolina. not only do they have four locations, but they have a massive banquet facility. try to get all of their business. and then we want to explain what the terms are, so i want you to bring whatever you need to explain... amber: stop real quick. why did you take him to larkin's? lemonis: because i feel like it's putting them in a real-life situation where i could sit back and see what is broken in the process or the people that i need to fix. amber: right. lemonis: and i like field trips. i really haven't seen you guys work together. and so i want to see if the two of you can actually work together in a business setting. that's what this is about for me. john: we are prepared to do that. lemonis: and, by the way, you better sell something, too. if your business is in trouble
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and you need my help, log on to...
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lemonis: do you remember i used to get sick every seaso amber: all the time. lemonis: in fact, you went out and bought insurance. amber: [ laughs ] lemonis: that's not a joke. amber: it's not a joke. we lose a lot of money if you don't show up to set. lemonis: i haven't gotten sick since you bought the insurance. amber: i know, but that's -- lemonis: by the way, if you'd like to buy advertising in our show... amber: if any insurance companies are watching this... lemonis: [ coughing ] amber: he will promote. meanwhile, i have no insurance, and now look at me. i'm talent. i deserve insurance. lemonis: i'm looking for a little bit more collaboration, and you guys working together is the deciding factor for me. john: we appreciate the time that you guys have given us today. i realize how valuable that is. and we're here just to tell you about west end coffee. we are a full-service coffee-roasting facility. alex: and if i placed the order today, when is it gonna be ready? bob: if it was a custom blend.
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becky: i don't know if we're gonna offer a private recipe for larkin's. if that's the case, we wouldn't have that on the shelf. john: to answer your question, chef, if you order that on monday, you'll have it in your kitchen on friday. so it may not necessarily be true that we would not have your coffee on the shelf. in fact, it's very likely that we would have your coffee on the shelf. lemonis: we'll carry a safety stock. john: yes. there's any equipment issues, anything like that, we're here for you. kristina: so you provide equipment and repairs? john: i can pledge to you that we will do everything possible to make sure that we earn your business every day. lemonis: he was doing good. amber: he's definitely more of a salesman than becky. lemonis: and our goal is to help you sell more coffee, because it's great margin. john: yeah. we would love to have you guys. kristina: yeah. alex: definitely. lemonis: we're glad that you're gonna give us an opportunity for your business. kristina: thank you. nice meeting you. bob: thank you. amber: i think john was definitely the much better salesman here than becky. lemonis: much better, but i think for me, it was more, can they actually experience success in business together?
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even if they got a very small order, it's like, "all right, high five. we don't hate each other totally. but maybe we still do." amber: [ laughs ] lemonis: i don't really want to carry things anymore that we don't sell volume of. so, amaretto. how many are on that? john: this says 60 on my list. lemonis: okay. i'll keep it. blackberry. john: 11. lemonis: butter pecan. john: 41. lemonis: okay. butter rum. john: eight. lemonis: and what is all this over here? john: those are smoothies. lemonis: how much do you sell of it? a lot? john: we do. it's seasonal. so that's why we got stuck with the expired product is 'cause we ordered too much. lemonis: this is all expired? john: yes. lemonis: why don't you just throw them out? john: 'cause that's like $4,000. lemonis: why'd you buy this much? becky: let's have that argument again. john: he's asking you a question. lemonis: it's not an argument. i'm just asking a question. john: she bought it. lemonis: i mean, we're selling expired merchandise. i'm just curious. becky: i ordered enough for a year. lemonis: you made a huge inventory mistake.
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and when you make a mistake, you just have to understand that it was a costly mistake. becky: yes. lemonis: pause. i started to lose confidence in her as a businessperson. amber: were you losing confidence in just her, or losing confidence in the business? lemonis: i was actually losing confidence in her. i didn't like his attitude, and i didn't like her attitude. but then she didn't display the focus of business. we went to larkin's, john was focused. we're doing inventory, john was focused. and if there was a mistake made, he kind of owned it. he's like, "all right, we can get better at that." she got pissed off. john: so, where's that e-mail from your hotshot attorney to resign as trustee of the pension plan? becky: i'll get it in a minute. john: you're either up front and honest or you're not. becky: i don't claim to be perfect. lemonis: i don't think i was here for this. john: but you won't admit when you make a mistake or anything else -- just like the smoothies. i thought again, "stupid, foolish me. i can work, and i can make this work," but it can't.
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becky: and you shook his hand. if you didn't feel like shaking his hand, you shouldn't have, because that's a gentleman's contract. john: i'll do the deal with marcus but not with you, and especially with no resignation letter. you're horrible at doing the right things until you're forced to do it. becky: and i told marcus i would do that. john: unless i have that today, effective today, we're done. i'm not selling my soul to anybody to put up with your [bleep] lemonis: is he wrong? amber: no. i don't think he's wrong in that moment. lemonis: do you think she was being disrespectful to him in that moment? amber: i don't think she was being disrespectful. i mean, i just think that he's frustrated. 'cause she's not taking ownership of anything. and he's asking her for this letter from the attorney, and she's flippant. she doesn't care. lemonis: right. becky: we've been trying to get this guy's business for two years. john: you were flying off the handle, ready to do it without me intervening. lemonis: they can't let their own personal egos aside. amber: right.
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lemonis: you almost want to just slap 'em. my mom washes the dishes... ...before she puts them in the dishwasher. so what does the dishwasher do? cascade platinum does the work for you, prewashing and removing stuck-on foods, the first time. wow, that's clean! cascade platinum.
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and especially with no resignation letter. you're horrible at doing the right things until you're forced to do it. becky: and i told marcus i would do that. john: unless i have that today, we're done. amber: pause. you know how we're shooting this? we're shooting this through the glass. because they didn't want us to hear this. they were on good behavior around you.
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you know, and the minute you are gone... lemonis: you get this. amber: ...this is what happens. and they don't know we're filming. lemonis: right. so, what's the good word? john: ask her has she done anything you asked her -- becky: you just tipped it for me. i contacted my attorney, asked him for that resignation for the director, as well as the trustee. lemonis: well, why isn't the paperwork signed, becky? becky: i don't have the form, but i will get the form. lemonis: it's a piece of paper, becky. becky: alls i can say is, you should probably be happy that i didn't sign it, because he's contacted business brokers to try and sell it... when i'm thinking we've got a deal. and now he's out shopping around. john: i didn't say i was trying to sell it. becky: john, you did. you talked to the guy on the phone. yes. john: okay. so i'm gathering information. -i think this is a free country. -becky: for what?! john: i think i can get additional information. becky: the deal is done. lemonis: what is it that you're going to find out? find out if i took advantage of you? to find out if the price you got was right? john: to find out if the price we got is right. lemonis: too [bleep] bad. you made a deal. john: okay. lemonis: and so, i don't think i gave you a bad deal. we shook hands. john: yes, sir. lemonis: and it meant nothing.
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poof. gone. john: no, that's not true. lemonis: but you were gonna go list the business. the only reason you didn't list the business is probably 'cause she wouldn't agree to sign the paper. john: no, no, that...[scoffs] lemonis: becky, is that true? john: i was not going to do that. that was never my intention. lemonis: well, why did you do it?! that's what's not clear to me. john: because of her. i would love to do a deal between you and i. lemonis: no, but we shook hands at the table, all three of us. becky: do we want to read texts? "i'm more than done. you have no savior. we will sell this for our original investment and start over without each other. marcus is irrelevant at this time. the business will be listed for sale tomorrow, miss 18% owner." lemonis: i got news for you. john: okay. lemonis: um...i am relevant. and i was the one guy that was helping you get the release of your freedom, 'cause i was the only relevant person that was able to get her to agree to do it. john: yes, sir. i get it. i understand. lemonis: i'll tell you the issue that i have. i know that i have a 51% stake in a coffee-roasting business that i think has a lot of capacity left
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and makes a good product. what i have to decide is who should be here and who shouldn't be. i think john wanted to do a deal with me, but he didn't want to be stuck with her. and he probably was hedging his bets a little bit, like what if the deal with me fell apart. amber: right. lemonis: what's my backup plan? in the back of his mind, he may have said, "becky's gonna continue to be becky. marcus is gonna potentially bail. and then i'm gonna be stuck here." maybe. i'm giving him the benefit of the doubt. who is in charge of sales? becky: in charge of sales? lemonis: sales. who is in charge to sell the product in this company? becky: i guess i don't understand the question. lemonis: what the... what don't you understand? becky: for collecting or selling or what? lemonis: mary and joseph! who's responsible to sell the product? becky: i do. lemonis: so you're the salesperson? becky: i guess so, if you want to say that. john: we don't have clearly defined roles and responsibilities, which is something i've been talking about for over a year. becky: he sucks at ordering. like, on that torani's order, they wanted the order in, and i told you we've been trying to get this guy's business for two years.
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john: we've got this guy's business. becky: and he wants apple, and he wants chocolate chip. give him [bleep] apple and chocolate chip. john: you were flying off the handle, ready to do it without me intervening whatsoever, reviewing it or nothing. you were just gonna do it. in fact, you did it. you tried it, and it didn't work because i called and shut it down, 'cause i didn't want any more of the corporate money wasted. lemonis: the two of you don't know what you're supposed to be doing. you're so busy fighting that you're not busy selling. and so the reason this business is for sale, was for sale, should be for sale is 'cause the two of you aren't capable of owning a business right now. you're not. you're not capable. amber: pause. is this like the moment where you're saying, "i hate you, amber"? lemonis: no. amber: "i hate you." lemonis: in this particular moment, my frustration is really like, "they can't let their own personal egos aside, and the business is gonna get crushed because of it." amber: right. lemonis: you almost want to just slap 'em. why do you still hang out? becky: i want to own my own company. i want to call the shots.
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i want to, you know, have my own destiny. and that's the whole reason i never signed that paper, because it's like, "you're not gonna lock me out." lemonis: you really are holding him hostage. you know you are. it's your leverage. becky: it is. lemonis: and i'm a big believer in leverage, by the way, so i can see your point, okay? but now that we have a deal, your destiny is controlled by you and by me, not by him, because if he can't behave, then i'll throw him out. this is probably the biggest peril when you're in business or in a partnership and in a relationship -- how do you unwind things? can i buy you out? can you buy me out? how does it work? which is why if you're gonna go into business with somebody that you're in love with, it's probably good to just get it all ironed out. because, unfortunately, you have to always assume that there's a possibility that it could go bad. amber: mm-hmm. lemonis: you have to. i want you to sign the form, and i'll hold it. becky: i'm willing to try. lemonis: let's go talk to him. come on. look, it's important to always do the right thing in business, even if you feel like it's gonna turn out bad for you.
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two wrongs don't make a right. "tendering my resignation in order to better facilitate the sale of stock." print that out. ♪ "hereby tendering my resignation as trustee of specialty coffee roasters, inc., retirement plan." it's what you've been asking for. right? john: yes. yes, sir. lemonis: "i am tendering my resignation in order to better facilitate the sale of the stock to marcus lemonis, llc." can you sign that? becky: okay. amber: he's like, "you're fired." lemonis: so, let me tell you how relevant i am. john: okay. lemonis: i now control you. she doesn't control you. and so if you ever go around my back again and i find out that you're meeting with brokers, i will not only not do the deal, but i won't give you this paper. and i'm gonna leave you to the wolves. john: okay. lemonis: don't ever [bleep] with me. are we clear? john: we're clear. lemonis: okay. now that becky signed the document,
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we should be able to move forward and focus on business issues. i need to delegate roles so that everyone has a clear role here at west end. you are the inventory manager. you are responsible for everything back here. becky: okay. lemonis: and you better know every cost on every product. you are now responsible for sales. john: okay. okay. lemonis: 100%. so no sales calls will come to anybody but you. john: okay, let's get to work. lemonis: i've done everything i can to set up john and becky for success, and it's time for me to go away for a few weeks. i need them to prove to me they can work together when i'm not here. as far as i'm concerned, it's do-or-die time for west end. becky: so i've been doing it all. john: i'm a very strong business leader. lemonis: you can't even follow up on a sales call. he was always gonna set her up. he got so laser-focused on that that the skills that he had in doing other things just went by the wayside.
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becky: i have been doing everything, guys go through a lot to deal with shave irritation. so, we built the new gillette skinguard with a specialized guard designed to reduce it. because we believe all men deserve a razor just for them. the best a man can get. gillette.
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and if you tell me that's not true -- john: you've been doing everything because marcus asked you to do everything. that's why. you think you own this place, and you think you run it. amber: every time you come in, they're fighting. lemonis: they were always fighting. i would show up. i'd usually be late, maybe one or two minutes. and i would get into the rv, and you'd be like, "hurry up, hurry up, hurry up. they're fighting. they're always fighting. get in there." amber: but we wanted you to see it. because the minute you are there... lemonis: they stop. amber: ...they stop, yeah. lemonis: okay. john: look, the bottom line is, you want me gone, i want you gone. becky: no. i can work with you. i've always said i can work with you.
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john: no, no. lemonis: as i look around this warehouse, i notice that they haven't done one single thing that i gave them to do. the warehouse is still full of expired products and items that don't sell, and the worst part is, they don't have one single stock of backstock coffee. it's as if i wasn't even here. hey, guys. john: hey, marcus. lemonis: "hey! hey, buddy!" so, all the changes that we made, they're all different again now? john: need to talk to miss rebecca on that. lemonis: there were supposed to be bags, and there were supposed to be five-pound bags. why aren't they made? becky: the reason that we decided -- lemonis: who told you guys that you could decide that? john: it's her. lemonis: you were in charge of sales. john: yes, sir. lemonis: any new accounts? john: two follow-up meetings with larkin's. lemonis: interesting. i have pages from my twitter account. "i guess west end coffee is too busy to quote us." john: what? lemonis: i mean, i'm not calling them out. i'm just saying he called me out. and i look like i don't have my [bleep] together. and then i talked to him, and he said to me follow-up's been terrible. true. do you want to be in this business? john: i want to be in this business. this is my business. lemonis: well, it's our business. john: excuse me. yes.
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lemonis: i'm scared to have anybody come here because we can't follow up with the local restaurant. becky: he's pissed off because you took a lot of what he was doing before. john: i'm not pissed off. becky: that's not true, john. john: he gave it to you, and i said, "here you go." becky: he throws everything on my desk and says, "marcus wants you to do it all," so i've been doing it all. john: i'm a very strong business leader. lemonis: you can't even follow up on a sales call. john: well, that's a whole different story. becky: yeah, it's different when it comes to him. he gave you one thing to do -- make sales calls. lemonis: i mean, come on. this is one guy. john: i'm giving you enough rope to hang yourself. lemonis: pause. he said to her, "i gave you enough rope to hang yourself." it was like he was always gonna set her up. amber: yeah, yeah. lemonis: and what happened was he got so laser-focused on that that the skills that he had in doing other things just went by the wayside. both of them were jockeying with, "how am i gonna kill the other person in business?" amber: and she knew that. lemonis: well, but she wasn't totally innocent in the process. amber: no, no, no. no. they both weren't, but, right. lemonis: they both were trying to out the other person.
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when he said, "oh, i gave you enough rope to hang yourself," it was like...wait a minute. that almost sounds like premeditated, calculated. i know relationships go bad, but when it comes to this place, you have a responsibility to make sure he gets paid, he gets paid, he gets paid, and you make money. and right now, this is a cluster[bleep] and what i don't like, john, is i don't like how you talk to her. even if she's wrong, as men -- at least how my mother raised me -- we have a certain responsibility to be respectful to women. look at her. and you don't care. you don't care how she feels. i'm surprised her son hasn't just beat the [bleep] out of you. you were in the van like, "yeah!" amber: yeah, that's the marcus i like. lemonis: i don't know why he tolerates it. you know what? you guys cannot work together. one of us has to go. becky: [ sniffling ] lemonis: for exclusives, extras, and business advice, visit...
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the biggest week in television is almost here. lemonis: you know what? you xfinity watchathon week. starting april 8th, enjoy free access to the best shows and movies from hbo, showtime, epix and more. what! whether it's more jaw droppers, standing o's upon standing o's or tv's biggest show stoppers.
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get more into what you're into. get ready to watch with xfinity x1 or the xfinity stream app. xfinity watchathon week. free starting april 8th. boop! one of us has to go. john and becky's relationship is so toxic that i no longer believe that the three of us can work together. no way. the only chance this business has of surviving is for one of them to go. john: he's right. amber: stop. and it's a bummer, too, because i remember you had really fun ideas for this business. and it wasn't just, like, getting into restaurants. like, you talked about since it was such a pretty building and it was in, like, the downtown of greenville -- lemonis: greenville, the town that i love. amber: right, there was a cute walking street, main street. you were gonna make, like, this coffee shop outside, like, a place where people could actually come and --
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lemonis: experiential things. amber: experiential. lemonis: they just were too bitter. amber: mm-hmm. lemonis: and i'm not talking about the coffee. john: he's right. one of the three of us has to go. well, it's not gonna be me. it's my money. it's 82% mine. becky: alls you want is your money. john: no. that's not all i want is my money. becky: you've looked at buying other businesses. john: you're not majority owner. you're 18%. you better start [bleep] acting like it. becky: thanks. you're just gonna run it into the [bleep] ground. [ sobs ] [ crying ] i just feel like i've been fighting so long because i love this company. i had to fight for it. i'm not giving up on it. [ sobbing continues ] my son's grown. this is my new baby. so i'm gonna take care of her. john: i want my business, and i want to run my business my way. i just don't see a way of moving beyond that with becky. i left a $120,000-a-year job to come work for free
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for two years to build something. it's my baby. i paid for it. lemonis: i came here to help you guys, and i came here to make a deal, 'cause i want to be in the coffee business. my job is to make an investment in a company and go out and sell. and the minute i leave, all hell breaks loose. john: you got marcus here to get rid of me. becky: no. john, i've always said we could work together. you continue to buck me on it. lemonis: tell me something that should make me not walk out that door. john: well, i can't speak for her, but i can speak for me. okay, i think i've proven myself. i think you saw what i can do at that larkin's meeting. i saved her in that meeting. lemonis: you didn't follow up on it, so what was the point? becky: i can certainly do it without you. i've done it without you since marcus left last time. i've done everything. you've sat over there and done nothing. lemonis: you actually didn't do everything since i left, 'cause you didn't do what i asked you to. becky: are we gonna just keep beating me up, or are we done? i mean, i don't know, marcus. i really can't take much more. i've been taking it for a year from him,
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and now i've gotten it from you. lemonis: what do you mean, i've been beating you up? see, with her, here's the problem, though. and this is really where i tipped. any criticism or any accountability of any kind, and all of a sudden, she's getting beat up. we agreed that you were gonna do a simple thing, and you don't do it, and then i criticize you for not doing it, it's like, "oh, you're beating me up." it's like, "oh, okay." amber: yeah, she played that card a lot. lemonis: waste of time. you've been telling me that he abuses you and yells at you -- i've seen it. but it's hard for me to want to do business with you, too, because you didn't even follow one thing. you don't even have one bag. humor me. he failed at his task, but so did you. and so what it proved to me is that if i gave you a million-dollar account, in my mind, you guys can't fulfill the business. why? what's your reason? becky: it's just the way we've always done it. lemonis: what does that mean? what you just said to me
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is the reason that i can't do business -- because you're unwilling to change the way you've always done it. amber: they both won't change. lemonis: i believe in people, process, and product. i can improve the product. we can work on the process. but sometimes, you just can't change the people. this is your resignation. john: oh! [ sighs ] lemonis: i wish you luck.le. john: thank you, marcus, for everything. thank you. lemonis: thanks. john: a million dollars just walked out the door. lemonis: west end coffee could have been a great business, but i don't get in business to be a mediator. i get in business to make money. and while i understand that sometimes people can't work together, in this case, there's no way that we could turn this business around with the two of them.
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amber: as far as, like, toxicity level -- [ laughs ] "toxicity." how does this rank? lemonis: it was definitely one of the more frustrating experiences for me. i always go in sort of bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, thinking that i can help it, and in some cases, you know, we've been successful in doing that. in this particular case, i almost felt like it got progressively worse. and i did leave here a little frustrated with myself, wondering if, like, i made it worse. did i actually rip the band-aid off and uncover something or expose something, or did i just accelerate what was eventually gonna happen? amber: i think you probably accelerated what was gonna happen. lemonis: which i didn't feel great about. it just didn't feel right. amber: right, right. lemonis: the whole thing just felt ick. amber: i'll drink to that. [ chuckles ] lemonis: it's cold now. it's, like, been here for two hours. amber: why don't you fake it like you did on the show? ♪
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hey, there we're live at the nasdaq after a very big day for the markets the guys are getting ready behind me. while they're doing that, here's what's coming up stocks just closed out a blowout quarter, but if you missed the khouw and carter have one name to play catch-up, plus -- you have no style or sense of fashion >> that's what dan nathan is saying about retail stocks right now. and it could be about to get ugly for the group he'll lay out the trade. and -- >> what's there to eat >> get up, napoleon, make yourself


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