Roastery Story: Alamode Foods and Prestogeorge Coffee & Tea
At CoffeeTec, we enjoy working with a wide range of buyers and sellers, whether you’re a startup coffee retail business, a mid-size roastery chain, or a roasting giant like Costco and Disney’s official roaster, Joffrey’s. All of our clients share a common passion for coffee roasting, whether they’ve been in the business for two years or two decades.
Speaking of the latter, we’ve worked with several roastery/retail clients for whom coffee roasting is a family affair. For this Roastery Story, we were honored to connect two second-generation coffee-roasting clients — spanning from the Midwest’s “Windy City” to “Steel City” on the Northeast U.S.’s western frontier — to help them keep on roasting.
A Sale, A Surprise, and a Solid Solution
If there’s anything we love more than working with family-operated coffee roasting businesses, it’s handling all aspects of the sale of a solid mini-plant. So, when Chicago-based Alamode Foods owner Angelo Lollino contacted us to sell his 2000 30K STA Futura K30 Impianti roaster and mini-plant — including bean loader, destoner, and afterburner — we were all ears. And, really. Just look at this roasting ray of sunshine!
Once Angelo settled on a price and listed the equipment on CoffeeTec.com, it didn’t take long before they received serious inquiries on this equipment set. Within a matter of weeks, this golden Italian stallion sold in February 2022 to a very excited roaster in Texas who is setting up shop on a farm — but that’s another story for another day.
Things start to get interesting with what happened next.
When CT Sales took on the task of selling this unit for Alamode Foods, seller Angelo Lollino made an interesting comment: “Tell you what, if you sell this, then I’ve got a present for you.”
"I’ve got something bigger, newer, and better: A fully automated 2010 50K Probatone mini-plant. It’s yours to sell if you think you can.”
Sell not one but TWO state-of-the-art, world-class, top-brand monster coffee roasting sets? Game on!
CT sales got to work on listing the roasting system (roaster, cooler, cyclone, loader, destoner, and stack) and promoting it through CoffeeTec’s proven marketing channels. The set didn’t include an afterburner, but CoffeeTec has leads on those. Plus, this is a freaking Probatone! And, even though it was labeled as a 50-kilo roaster, you can roast a full bag of beans on this guy with no problem.
Unsurprisingly, sales heard from several interested buyers — including a returning client CT has worked with on and off for more than a year to source roasting equipment. Stan Prestogeorge owns Prestogeorge Coffee & Tea in Pittsburgh, and he’s a planner. He’s been working for months on plans to purchase an additional building to expand his roasting operations. So, when he found the right location, the timing just so happened to align with the availability of this gorgeous, sleek Probatone roasting beast.
To get all of his questions answered, CT jumped on a four-way video call with the seller, Angelo, his master roaster, and Stan. Once Stan was satisfied with what he heard, he and CT closed the deal in early September.
This roasting system would also provide Stan with something else: full automation. As a second-generation owner (like seller Angelo Lollino), Stan had inherited the 1950s-era Jabez Burns 6R (30K) roaster his father, John, had purchased to start the business. Along the way, Stan had picked up a Jabez Burns 7R (70K). Both roasters run practically every day of the week, all day long. With Stan’s planned expansion, he knew he needed machinery to move him into the 21st century — and that’s exactly what he got with this Probatone mini-plant.
Another cool thing: Stan was able to work with his financing team to package up the equipment, freight, crate, and installation as part of the overall building purchase. CoffeeTec didn’t assist with the financing on this one (our expert equipment financing network doesn’t handle real estate financing), but we share this tip:
If you’re doing something similar, you might be able to work with your real estate financing team to roll your roasting equipment into the deal — allowing you to hold onto your cash for other business expenses.
CT Handles It All — From Sale To Install
You’ve heard us say this before in our Roastery Stories, and we’ll say it again: The sale may be final, but we’re far from finished. In fact, that’s when the bulk of our logistical expertise kicks in. We quickly work to coordinate all crating and freighting details to get your roasting equipment to you as soon as possible.
We also usually handle the equipment installation and arrange for the same technician to pack up the equipment at the seller’s and complete the installation on the buyer’s end. That’s the kind of peace of mind that comes with the territory when you buy from CoffeeTec. In fact, as this article is being published, our technician will soon install this Probatone set in Pittsburgh, helping our buyer Stan to keep cranking away as he slides into the busiest coffee roasting season of the year.
If you’re looking to buy or sell a roaster, we hope this Roastery Story shows that CoffeeTec is the only way to go. Please contact us for a chat.
We’ve always got a rotating selection of used and new equipment, and we take time to understand what you’re looking for to keep your roastery running. We can also advise on your roastery plans and logistics.
And, don’t forget: if you need financing support, please check out our Roaster’s Choice Lending Program. Let’s help you build the coffee roastery of your dreams — and with a roaster that’s right for you.