AZBBA Broker Spothlight – Brian Harron, CBB

Restaurant and Bar Broker
Arizona Restaurant Sales

With more than 40 years experience as both a restaurateur and restaurant and bar broker, Brian Harron has been privileged to sell many restaurant and bar businesses and has owned and operated a few as well! He has been exclusively involved in the buying, selling, and leasing of restaurants and bars since 1980.

How did you get into the business brokerage industry?

I was doing some consulting in the restaurant business in the early 1980’s and my next door neighbor had a small RE firm.  We talked and I got an RE license.  Have had a RE license continuously since then but took a 10 year hiatus in the 90’s to develop and operate restaurants in Native American Casinos.  Worked with Ruly Couch for a few years and learned a lot from him.

What is your favorite thing about the industry?

Favorite thing is specialization in restaurants and bars and the people I meet and the things we have in common.  I confess I also like the money that one can make.  Restaurants and bars are natural for me since I have a degree from Cornell School of Hotel Administration with a specialization in food and beverage.  Also, my wife is an award winning author of cookbooks and was a high end caterer in the San Francisco area.

What is the best or most interesting deal you have worked on?

Best and most interesting deal was a deal that Tim Whipple and I worked on.  Side note is that Tim and I have been business partners for about 20 years.  The deal was in Prescott and was an Italian Restaurant listed for $3.2 million. Took a long time to find the right buyer and then he got a San Francisco hot shot lawyer so the buyer got a lawyer and 9 months later we had a deal close.  Tim and I took out the sellers after COE and had lunch and several bottles of Dom Perignon.

What is the key to being a successful broker?

Education! Once you stop learning you stop earning.  That is why I have been so active in AZBBA as President and Vice President and Education Chairman a few times.  Networking and co-brokering has been good too.  I still try to get an online workshop on a weekly basis. AZBBA has also been a good education provider.

What do you do on your day(s) off?

I generally do not take days off. I take hours off.  But when I do I get out of town for a few days.