Category Archives: Missouri

Genesis Health Clubs acquires two Ozark Fitness Centers in Springfield, Mo.

WICHITA — Rodney Steven II is at it again.

He’s added two more health clubs to his 28-year-old Genesis Health Clubs chain, this time in Springfield, Mo.

Steven has purchased his friend Dan Martin’s two Ozark Fitness Centers in Springfield.

“The clubs are so similar to ours,” Steven says. “It’s just a very similar marriage for us.”

This brings his total to 15 clubs in Kansas and Missouri, including five in Wichita.

“Dan’s been a good friend for a lot of years,” Steven says.

“He’s kind of an industry veteran. Warrior, actually,” Steven says. “He started out in just a little garage.”

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Ribbit Computers owner to open Golden Corral and possibly Jack in the Box

WICHITA — Ribbit Computers owner Alex Harb has been interested in the restaurant business since college, and now he’s finally getting ready to open one of his own.

“I just wanted to wait for the right opportunity to do it,” he says.

His first foray into the business will be with a Golden Corral in Raymore, Mo., followed by three more in the Kansas City area in the next five years.

What he’s planning for Wichita is a little more exciting, depending on your dining preferences.

“We’re talking to Jack in the Box,” Harb says.

He’s had a couple of meetings but has had to put talks on the back burner for a bit. Harb says he expects to sign a deal within six months to do three Jack in the Box restaurants in Wichita. He says he loves the chain’s tacos and was impressed with how the California-based company operates.

“I think Wichita will really embrace that brand, and it will do really well in Wichita.”

Harb says North Carolina-based Golden Corral is a good company, too. A franchisee already has two in Wichita, so Harb says doing any Golden Corrals here is not an option for him.

Once he signs the Jack in the Box deal, Harb says it’s not clear how long it would take to get the restaurants open.

“Usually these things take some time,” he says. “Finding the site sometimes can be a little difficult.”

Once he has the sites, Harb says it takes 120 days to build each of the restaurants.

Harb is a 2004 graduate of Wichita State University.

“While I was going to college, I worked in restaurants,” he says. “I really wanted to open a restaurant by the time I was done.”

He says he realized he needed business experience first.

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Mitchell Theatres acquires Belton Cinema 8 in Belton, Mo., for its seventh theater group

WICHITA — Mitchell Theatres has acquired its seventh chain of theaters in the region, which means it now has 52 screens.

The Mitchell family’s acquisition of Belton Cinema 8 in Belton, Mo., marks its first foray into the Kansas City area, but it’s not likely to be its last.

“There could be more opportunities up there,” says Brian Mitchell.

He operates the business with his siblings, Brent Mitchell, a lawyer at Martin Pringle, and Kendra Ramsey, who lives in Texas.

The Mitchell family is a farming family that bought its first theater in Newton five years ago, and Brian Mitchell says lessons from farming are proving beneficial in the theater business.

“It’s kind of the farm concept,” he says of managing expenses by buying carefully and doing remodeling and other work themselves.

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