Home City Burrito Buggy owners receive offers on iconic food truck, plan to expand OMG! chain

Burrito Buggy owners receive offers on iconic food truck, plan to expand OMG! chain

8 min read
A Facebook post listing the Burrito Buggy for sale. Screenshot via Facebook.

The owners of a popular Athens eatery have decided to put the Burrito Buggy on the market, but it’s not the end for the buggy or for Sheldon and Bethany Andrus.

The owners of the Burrito Buggy received an offer for the Athens food truck on Friday and anticipate another offer on Monday.

Sheldon and Bethany Andrus, the co-owners of Rutter Hospitality and owners of the Burrito Buggy, are asking $65,000 for the buggy, the cargo truck that pulls it and the branding associated with the concession trailer. Rutter Hospitality has owned the Burrito Buggy for eight out of the 34 years that it has been in operation.

“There’s been a huge amount of interest,” Sheldon said. “But there’s definitely a difference between ‘interested’ and ‘capable.’”

The owners said that they were surprised by the amount of public interest in the sale of the Burrito Buggy after they posted about it on Facebook on February 8. Sheldon also said it was difficult to determine which offers were serious but that the list had been narrowed down to serious buyers.

Sheldon and Bethany said that the Burrito Buggy has been profitable for the eight years they have owned it and that the decision to sell the concession trailer was not due to a loss of revenue.

“We said, ‘we’re going to list it, if it doesn’t sell it doesn’t sell,’” Bethany said.

Athens' iconic Burrito Buggy is for sale. Photo by Sarah Horne.
Athens’ iconic Burrito Buggy is for sale. Photo by Sarah Horne.

“Knowing who some of our offers are from, we could have sold it for more,” Sheldon said. “There is something to be said in this day and age about a 34-year-old food truck brand that still has a legitimate cult following.”

The asking price for the Burrito Buggy was set lower than what Rutter Hospitality paid for it in 2010. Sheldon and Bethany said that was done to keep it accessible to less affluent entrepreneurs and also to take into account that the trailer itself will most likely be replaced by the new owners within the next few years.

The current Burrito Buggy is the second trailer in the brand’s history. The first was operational for five to six years, then it was replaced by the custom-made concession trailer, which is still in operation today more than twenty years later.

The Burrito Buggy will likely stay in Athens, according to Sheldon and Bethany. Though it was not a requirement or the sale, the owners said that they looked at potential buyers to see who wanted to keep it on Ohio U’s Campus.

“There are very few places you can go and have a captive audience of people every day of the year, not just for festivals,” Sheldon said. “You park that buggy on college green, there’s twenty thousand people swirling around you all day.”

Sheldon said that food trucks are an entry-level business venture, and that the Burrito Buggy should be accessible to first-time business owners.

“I see the Burrito Buggy in 50 years having been owned by five different people, and every 10 years it goes to the next fresh set of eyes and that person grows another business,” Sheldon said. “Maybe somebody franchises it, and there’s Burrito Buggies everywhere. We actually toyed with that idea before selling it, but brick and mortar concepts are really where we want to be.”

The owners were not at liberty to say who has made offers to purchase the Burrito Buggy, nor were they able to disclose the exact amount of money that the offer received on Friday was for.

They said the money made from selling the Burrito Buggy will go into their company’s operations account to be spread between the other aspects of their business. Rutter Hospitality also owns the OMG! Rotisserie chain and the Madison on Paint event center in Chillicothe.

Unlike the Burrito Buggy, Rutter Hospitality has no plans to sell their mobile version of OMG! Rotisserie. Bethany said that the OMG! Rotisserie trailer is easier to move and manage than the Burrito Buggy, and that the company uses it as a precursor to their brick and mortar restaurants.

The OMG! Rotisserie truck is currently in Chillicothe, where the third restaurant of the chain will be located.

“It’s slated for March 24 grand opening, but we might actually be ahead of that by a week,” said Sheldon. “Our goal is to open a fourth one by the end of the year.”

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