Another locally owned business has found a new home, putting it in a better position for further success and growth, thanks to Murphy Commercial Real Estate. MRE Properties recently welcomed Rutabaga Juicery & Eats into a long-term lease agreement at 4 Ridgely Avenue in West Annapolis beginning in the spring of 2020.
Great Opportunity For Local Business
Joe Sera, who represented MRE Properties on behalf of Murphy CRE in the deal, emphasizes that this move is a great opportunity for Rutabaga Juicery & Eats, which has been flourishing despite the limited space it currently has at 116 Annapolis Street.
“They’re crushing it,” he says, citing that Rutabaga is doing a tremendous amount of volume out of a 425-square-foot space — an impressive accomplishment!
“Their small space was limiting their ability to grow,” Sera continues. “By moving into this other building, they have a lot more opportunity.”
Rutabaga’s new home at 4 Ridgely Avenue, previously the home of PNC Bank, was acquired by MRE Properties in August 2017. In the two years since then, MRE Properties worked with the City of Annapolis to have the property approved for a food use.
The change in location marks an exciting new chapter of growth for Rutabaga Juicery & Eatery, which was founded on the principle of making minimally processed whole-foods convenient and available to people on the go.
About the Founders
Wife-and-husband founders & co-owners Stacey Fink and Jim Heywood saw a lack of this type of business model in the greater Annapolis area, where fast food restaurants dominated the market. Fink and Heywood opened their first shop in 2015 with a team comprising only them and two other employees, and customers quickly embraced their business concept.
In the years since, Rutabaga Juicery & Eatery has expanded to opening a second location and cultivating a team of 25 employees. Customers have rated the restaurant 5 out of 5 stars on Facebook and 4.7 out of 5 stars on Google.
The restaurant’s menu is made up of plant-based dishes that are crafted from whole ingredients and are full of nutrients. Customers who are feeling thirsty can enjoy freshly made smoothies, raw cold-pressed juices, or kombucha on tap (bring your own growler or purchase one at the shop). Hungry? Order a smoothie bowl, specialty toast, a veggie bowl, or a sandwich.
Healthy food on the go
In addition to more space inside, the new property has an existing drive-thru, which Sera describes as huge for a retail tenant like Rutabaga, as it provides a tremendous amount of convenience for their customers. Sera estimates that eateries such as Dunkin’ or Starbucks that have drive-thrus do about 40 to 50 percent more in revenue than sites that do not.
As for the team at MRE Properties, helping Rutabaga find a new home is more than just a transaction — they plan to be customers. “They’re excited because they like the business,” Sera says. “But also their office is basically across the street and they’ll be able to walk there.”
Rutabaga Juicery & Eats will continue to occupy 116 Annapolis Street in Annapolis until moving to its new home in 2020. The shop is open from 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturdays and 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Sundays. Rutabaga Juicery & Eats also has a location at 1131 A Route 3 North in Gambrills, which operates under the same hours. To learn more, visit www.rutabagajuicery.com.
MRE Properties is an Annapolis-based firm that invests in and develops commercial real estate. For more information, visit www.MRE-properties.com.