This ‘Honor System’ Coffee Shop Has No Employees

When David and Kimberly Brekke of North Dakota decided to convert an old bank into a coffee shop, they had a unique idea: The store would operate solely on the honor system. The Vault café has no cashier or employees, but instead solely relies on the honesty of customers to leave cash and swipe their own credit cards. So far, the model has been a success. As Neatorama notes, “David Brekke says that at the end of the typical day, he's not missing any money. On the contrary—there’s usually 15% more money than expected in the till.” Well done, humanity ...




Robert commented…

Don't get me wrong, as I wish the owners success and I really like the honesty shown by customers, but I don't think it's hard to appreciate why they haven't broken even -- they devoted 3.5 years to renovate a bank into what appears to be a glorified, albeit nice, vending machine? They're serving K-cups and the like and I can't imagine the volume is very good at all to warrant what I imagine the investment to have been.

Kory Leach


Kory Leach commented…

Robert, what business breaks even when just starting up? None, would be about the number. Not breaking even to the investment and not being profitable are two different issues. Valley City is a quiet town of about 7000 people. If nothing else they have the property that should be a fair investment in itself. Oh, and for the record I'm pretty familiar with the town, my grandmother still lives there.

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