Update Sept. 24: Here’s the latest from Jodi and Amber:
Firstly, thank you for the moral, physical, and financial support. We are amazed by all of you! Secondly, we met with the Board of Directors of Our VOICE today. We have confirmed that they are in full support of Battlecakes, and that the 5% of revenue daily donation will go to Our VOICE every day in perpetuity! We want #battlecakes to be a home for Our VOICE in the community, and a place for fundraisers, art shows, community meetings, and more. Thirdly, we have made an offer to purchase! We’ve offered to purchase their equipment only. We know that there is another offer on the table (or possibly a contract signed) from a downtown coffeeshop wanting to expand. We’re not sure if it’ll be a competing offer or a back up offer, but we wanted you to know that we’re putting our best effort forward. We will be waiting to hear about the status of our offer. We’re on pins and needles and we’ll let you know as soon as we hear!
xoxo Amber and Jodi
Update: Jodi Rhoden and Amber Arthur have launched a crowd-funding campaign to raise money for their cafe idea, one that is a direct response to the Waking Life scandal. More details below. Here’s the indiegogo for Battlecakes:
More info:-Battlecakes is an LLC owned by Amber Arthur and Jodi Rhoden.-We pledge to include in our operating agreement that the business will give 5% of daily gross revenues to local non-profits working to prevent sexual violence every day.-We pledge to be a home in the Asheville community for organizing against sexism and sexual violence, hosting community events and sharing information.-any additional funds we raise in this campaign beyond the $18,000 startup funds will be donated directly to local non-profits working to empower women and prevent and address sexual violence.
Original post Sept. 23: Jodi Rhoden and Amber Arthur, two successful and well-known female entrepreneurs in Asheville, have proposed a new local business in the wake of the Waking Life scandal. Rhoden is the owner of Short Street Cakes. Most recently, Rhoden has been working with Birds Eye Business Planning and Consulting, which is aimed at helping small businesses with a host of consulting and support.
Arthur is the owner of Battlecat coffee shop on Haywood Road in West Asheville.
The idea is to create an enterprise that would donate the money it makes to a different community nonprofit every month, with a focus on empowering women, according to a post on Rhoden’s Facebook page.
The future of the Waking Life business is unclear. The owners, Jared Rutledge and Jacob Owens, have stated publicly earlier this week that they planned to close for a few days while they consider their future. The Asheville Citizen-Times reported today that the business has lost its lease on a second downtown location it planned to open later this year.
Here’s the post from Rhoden’s page on FB:
Hello Asheville Community.
In the wake of the recent debacle surrounding Waking Life, Amber Arthur of Battlecat and I have been brainstorming about how we can transform the hateful negativity of Jared and Jacob’s business into a source of support, love, and healing for women in our community.
We have an idea to together buy the equipment and the lease of the business (we are not interested in handouts from those guys, thank you very much) and create a cafe and sweet shop (Battlecakes, anyone?) where a percentage of every day’s revenues (ALL sales, not just profits) will go to a different community non-profit each month, with a focus on empowering women.
Eventually we would like implement more direct social entrepreneurship programs within the business. We have a business plan, we have investors, and we have the experience and infrastructure of Short Street Cakes, Battlecat, and Penny Cup behind us, but most importantly, if you will support us, we have you. We will only move forward with this idea if you, our community, supports it. What do you say, Asheville? Should two West Asheville women entrepreneurs pirate this sinking ship and steer it towards calmer waters? You let us know. #battlecakes