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Crowd Funding a Possibility for McMenamins Elks Project
McMenamins is exploring a new way of funding projects, which, if it works, could help the Tacoma Elks Lodge project off the ground. That's if it works in Bothell first.
The McMenamins brothers announced this week that they're making a push for outside investors to generate the last $8 million of a $26 million project to renovate Anderson Middle School in Bothell. Although it's being called "crowd funding," it's no Kickstarter; according to the Puget Sound Business Journal, you'll need at least $1 million net worth, and $200,000 or more in annual income to get in on the Bothell deal.
Technically investors would be buying in on the property, rather than the business.
While the deal offers the company’s well-heeled fans a chance to invest in a $100 million-plus operation, their influence will be limited.
Investors will invest in Anderson School Properties, a limited liability company set up to own and develop the property. Anderson School Properties in turn will lease the site to McMenamins’ Washington operating division. Investors will have little if any control over day-to-day operations.
There would be a few extra perks. According to details listed on the Anderson School investment terms, the McMenamins are advertising an 8% return on investment, plus other perks, including special pricing on hotel stays, concert tickets, and spa visits, as well as previews of other McMenamins properties, beer, wine, spirits, and more.
The Tacoma Elks Lodge remodel project is expected to be a little cheaper overall than the Bothell school - $20 million is the figure we last saw. Of that $20 million, the McMenamins still need $6 to 7 million, which they've been having trouble lining up. In December, they announced that the Tacoma project would be delayed indefinitely, while they focus on completing the Bothell school - a project that (unlike the Elks building) came with a deadline.
According to The News Tribune the brothers are currently looking for EB-5 immigrant investor funding for the Elks project, but might consider the crowd funding scheme here too if it works in Bothell. Looking to other investors to fund a project is new for the McMenamins brothers, who have traditionally funded their projects themselves. TNT reports that this new tactic would allow the brothers to approach investors directly, rather than going through investment brokers, who have shown little interest in the project so far.
So, if you've got a spare $250,000 or more, you could get in on the Bothell project now, but we'd rather you saved it for Tacoma's Elks project... just in case.
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