Coffeeco to move

Coffeeco has been at 344 Johnson St. since 2008. In March, the new location will open on Market Square at 322 King St.
Coffeeco has been at 344 Johnson St. since 2008. In March, the new location will open on Market Square at 322 King St.

After failing to renegotiate the terms of its lease, Coffeeco is moving out of its 344 Johnson St. location effective Jan. 31.

Richard Ottenhof owns Coffeeco and its supplier Multatuli Coffee, a coffee roasting company that also supplies Common Ground Coffeehouse and the Tea Room. Coffeeco were operating under a sublet agreement with the previous renters of the space, Ottenhof said.

“The original five-year lease was signed by Coffee and Company, another coffee shop, in 2001 with two five-year renewal periods, which would bring the full lease term to 15 years,” he said.

Coffeeco was founded in 2008 and has a location on Johnson St. and at the Kingston Centre.

Ottenhof said Coffeeco has been in negotiations with landlord and residential real estate agent Hugh Mosaheb since February 2011 when the first renewal term ended.

“We wanted to change it to our name and our lease. We wanted to add a further five years to the lease so we could guarantee we’d be there for 10 years,” Ottenhof said.

He said he received notice on Dec. 23 that the coffee shop would need to move out.

Mosaheb declined to comment.

Ottenhof said Coffeeco will definitely be leaving the Johnson St. location at the end of the month.

There are 25 staff who work at the two Coffeeco locations, Ottenhof said.

“We have five Queen’s students, two high school students and six full-time workers — the rest are part-time individuals who are doing various other schooling.”

Ottenhof added that all of the staff members will be offered employment at the new Coffeeco location at 322 King St. Market Square.

“Construction should be done in mid-March,” he said.

Ottenhof said moving out of 344 Johnson St. is only a setback.

“We’re opening a brand new location and we’ll move on and survive.”

Peter Downard, a defamation lawyer hired by Mosaheb on Wednesday, said Ottenhof was offered the chance to stay at the location until the end of 2012 at the current monthly rate of $1,334.16.

— With files from Katherine Fernandez-Blance

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