Entrepreneur: Peter Sukhran, East Coast Video
Location: Fort Greene, Brooklyn
Amount repaid: $15,000 of $15,000
From horror to drama to foreign, Peter Sukhran, owner of East Coast Video, carries it all. “Quantum of Solace is behind you on the top shelf, two videos in from the left,” Peter informs a new customer from memory. He has run this neighborhood store for the past seven years after buying the business to supplement his income. To finance the acquisition he negotiated a loan from the past owner and planned to pay monthly interest and principle payments over two years. The business was successful enough that Peter was able to pay off the loan within the first year, but he paid the second year’s interest as a gesture of good will. As the business grew, he quit his office job to run the video store full-time. He was motivated by the freedom “of not having to shave everyday” and the ability to work on his own terms.
Last year this Brooklyn entrepreneur was inspired to convert the front of his store into an ice cream stand for extra income during the summer months. He installed a refrigeration unit and comfy benches out front for patrons to people-watch while enjoying their butter pecan cones. After repeated customer requests, Peter has now decided to expand into smoothies and fresh juices. “It’s a never ending project but it’s MY business,” he remarks with a smile as he rents the new Spike Lee film to a fellow movie lover.