Catering Service
Lisa Bowen
I recently purchase a catering business which included equipment and service for 200. Since the purchase we have run into a number of road blocks as we tried to obtain a commercial kitchen at a reasonable price. Without the ability to prepare the food myself I was wondering if there is a market for starting a business that works with restaurants that are not equiped for catering currently but would like to capture that business. My angle would be to provide the catering supplies and equipment, pick-up the prepared food from the restaurant, transport, set up the display. serve the food and clean up for a fee. Is this a worth while venture or a dead end? As a new owner with very little experience any advice would be appreciated.
First, about the kitchen; many churches and some lodges and community clubs/centers have large, well-equipped licensed kitchens that stand vacant most of the week. Check them out. Also, some municipal business "incubators" have licensed kitchens available.

The Small Business Administration has a wonderful service for start-up businesses called the service core of retired entrepreneurs (SCORE); if you could hook up with one, you could get a lot of help.

That is an unusual angle for the pick-up and deliver, sort of interesting. If you are in an area with lots of restaurants and parties, it might be practical. It would require great negotiating skills, and you would have to keep both the restaurant and the end customer happy...