Buster McLeod just sent out this email to all members of McLeods. To sum: The awesome tech art gallery needs help. Details below:
This is a difficult email to write, but we owe it to our members to be transparent about our situation. Simply put, McLeod Residence is in big trouble, as in financial trouble. The short story is, we’re running out of money. Our initial personal and angel investments are dwindling, and due to circumstances that have not allowed us to fully implement our business plan, our revenue hasn’t yet caught up to costs. McLeod Residence will have to close its doors unless we are able to raise a hefty amount of cash on the order of $40-$50,000 and quick.
Lele, Maggie, Chris and I began working on McLeod Residence since last October with a vision to bring art, technology, and collaboration together in a new way that Seattle had never seen. The gallery would feature art with a technological bent (a genre that is gaining momentum in Europe but has not found its niche in the US yet) and the lounge would provide a comfortable, friendly space for conversation and interaction. Most importantly, liquor sales would help us support more experimental art and artists, and allow us to take some risks as a gallery. The entire project has been centered on the idea of creating a supportive, engaging community for everyone. On many levels we’ve succeeded: In eight months we’ve welcomed 289 McLeod members, hosted many exciting events, shown innovative and exciting art, and received positive reviews in almost every major Seattle publication.
The space we have chosen to house McLeod Residence is 100 years old, and bringing it up to code so we can get a liquor license requires far more work than we were aware of when we signed the lease. The end is finally in sight: our latest submitted plans to the city are expected to be approved this week. During this process, however, we’ve drained our resources and no longer have the funds to make our drywall, plumbing and electricity code-compliant. Our survival is dependent on being able to perform this work so we can earn revenue by opening to the public as a lounge seven nights a week.
We have exhausted our other options. We do not have enough credit history to secure a loan or a credit line without a co-signer yet. We are now asking for your help in finding us new investors (perhaps in your own selves), because we a) desperately need it and b) know that you members believe in the project, and that asking for help is required before help can be found.
We are searching for people who would like to share in the ownership of our business.
Are you someone who can invest in the future of McLeod Residence on the order of $10-$50,000?
Do you know someone who can invest in the future of McLeod Residence on the order of $10-$50,000?
These two questions are by far the most important questions to answer in the affirmative during the next couple weeks if we want McLeod to survive. To give you some numbers to consider, $10,000 buys you 4% of McLeod, $20,000 buys you 8%, etc. We currently have 711 outstanding shares (71.1% of McLeod currently split between Lele and I) and are looking to sell up to 500 of the remaining shares. We have papers all set up, and can walk any interested parties through the details.
We are confident that once we get around this permitting obstacle, McLeod Residence will be great in its success.
If you cannot help in terms of investment, please let us know if you can help in other ways. We know that you believe in us, and your help would be greatly appreciated. Can you upgrade your membership, bring in new members, purchase the art you’ve been wanting, or host events that help raise money? Please let us know your ideas. If you need any more information or have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask either Lele or myself.
Finally… rest assured!
Whatever happens, McLeod and our vision will continue. We know that each of you has invested a part of yourself in this project (monetarily, creatively, through yearly and lifetime memberships, etc) and whether we stay in this particular space, or become a transient project while we plot to resurrect in a new form, we will not simply close up shop and forget about the momentum that has been created here. All of us are in this for the long term.
Buster McLeod & Lele McLeod & company