A story that went viral last month about a San Francisco pet store owner looking to sell his business to the right buyer for "$0" — actually for $120,000 worth of inventory — has a happy ending.
KPIX first reported on John Chan's offer in late August, after it had already gone viral on Nextdoor. He was looking to retire and sell the family business first started by his father, Pet Central at 1411 Powell Street.
"Pet store for sale. Owner retired. Looking for some one who loves animals. And take good care of my customers. Asking price is $0."
The asking price was slightly misleading — while Chan wasn't looking to profit off the 50+-year-old business itself, which he said was worth about $300,000, he was looking to sell all of his inventory at cost, about $120,000.
"We're not trying to make money off the pet store," Chan told KPIX. "We want to make sure we find people with a good heart. That's the most important thing."
He says the response, especially after the KPIX report, was huge.
As he now tells the station, "It's so crazy. After it aired, after the news, it was a hundred calls, texting, e-mails and all kinds of stuff. I worked day and night to answer all the questions."
The Nextdoor post also brought in inquiries from as far away as Singapore, Chan says. But ultimately, the buyer he chose came from closer to home.
His name is Christopher Blake, and he grew up in Chinatown, shopping at Pet Central with his own father, who passed away during the pandemic.
Blake tells KPIX he saw the original report on YouTube, and he decided to go in on the business with two other pet-loving friends from the neighborhood.
"We could not let this place go," Blake says.
And so, the store is going into good, local hands, and Chan can now happily retire and take a well-deserved vacation. He says he's been working six days a week at the store for 40 years, since he was 18 years old, caring for its exotic birds, fish, and reptiles, and this will be his first vacation in 15 years.
Photo via Yelp