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  • Roger Andrus

Pelican Pete's Secret


Pelican Pete's was a lesson in running a company by the metrics. When I visited this potential client in Central Florida, approximately thirty years ago, they were seeking funding to expand the outdoor and indoor facilities of their amusement park. Outside came complete with miniature golf, batting cages, and miniature go-karts. Inside was an arcade, snack bar, and party rooms.


As I observed the operation, one thing impressed me more than anything else. The owner knew the exact amount of revenues he needed to generate on every square foot of his property on a daily and weekly basis to be profitable. In particular, he would calculate the placement of each video game inside the facility and how much revenue it generated per day. If a certain square footage was not producing at an acceptable level, he would trade the machine in that area out or move it and find another that produced the needed profit.


Over the years, I have looked for business owners having what I call the “Pelican Pete” mindset. When I see that, I know it makes for an interesting investment of time and money. Important insight entrepreneurs can gain from Pelican Pete’s is that running a business by the metrics will drive profitability.