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State liquor board’s live auction includes Kenmore store
Devinder Sahota and his associates won’t fill their proverbial Liquor Barn Enterprises bottle with the state-run Kenmore store after all.
It will instead be Kent’s Jasvir Kaur, who was the top bidder — at $225,000 — in the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) May 24 live auction for the rights to apply for a spirits retail liquor license at the local store at 6820 N.E. Bothell Way.
Kaur could not be reached for comment at the Reporter’s deadline.
“They were really stretched out over here. We planned to operate that one, but it didn’t go through,” said Sahota, adding that the location wasn’t a good match with their funds. “We kind of weighed the pluses and minuses, and we decided to pass on it.”
Sahota, of Vacaville, Calif., was the winning bidder in a month-long online auction — which ended April 20 — for the rights to a license with a $270,900 bid.
Following the online auction, top-bidders representing 18 state liquor stores did not pay their posted bid, sacrificing their deposit.
The WSLCB successfully re-auctioned the rights to apply for a spirits retail liquor license at those stores. The sum of individual bids totaled $5.57 million, with rights awarded to 14 successful bidders.
“These bidders are here because they want to be part of what has been a very profitable business for the state,” said WSLCB Director of Business Enterprise Pat McLaughlin.
The live auction was hosted at the WSLCB Distribution Center in Seattle and conducted by Stokes Auction.
In April, Sahota said Liquor Barn (based in Redding, Calif.) bid on quite a few of the stores before landing the Kenmore spot. He added that they weren’t sure what their next step in the ownership process would be.
Top bidders for Bothell’s two stores — at 19111 Bothell Way N.E. and 20617 Bothell-Everett Highway — are Balwant Singh of Lacey ($154,100 bid) and Abi Eshagi of Woodinville ($110,800 bid), respectively.
Privately owned liquor retailers may begin selling hard alcohol or spirits on June 1.