In Marketing by Clyde Mooney

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The competition to own James Sneddon’s Das Hund Haus bier bar has ended, with a man pocketing his own pub and Sneddon scoring a big win from the exercise.

Entries closed to buy the pub’s two-for-one voucher last Thursday at 5pm, each coming with five complementary tickets to win Das Hund Haus (The Dog House), in Newcastle. That night the random electronic draw selected local man Guy Ashford as the winning ticket-holder.

James Sneddon, with winners Guy Ashford Lisa Ashford

Sneddon reports that final count saw 12,621 of the $25 vouchers sold to persons from 20 countries. Of these, 637 were redeemed, bringing an average of $130 spend each, during the typically quieter winter months.

Gross revenue from the exercise amounted to over $315k.

From this, and the huge benefit to cashflow derived, Sneddon has spent almost $75k on: the prize money ($30k), $10k added surety for the landlord, and assorted legal and promotional expenses.

Given his own original valuation of circa $200k for the business, the former accountant says it has proven a great way to sell.

“My heart was in my mouth just about the whole time,” the former publican told PubTIC.

“Social media and the press drove sales, however being such an unusual promotion I don’t think the public would have trusted this without some traditional media.”

James Sneddon & Pip Cave

The new owner and his wife have since celebrated at the Das Hund with Sneddon and his fiancé Pip, the accountant-turned-publican-turned-tech company founder still “a bit dusty” today.

Having launched the German bier bar just a few years ago, Sneddon decided to sell in order to pursue his latest dream, to launch a revolutionary new service for the treatment and prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), Stigma Health.

Now that the whirlwind and his ‘third’ full-time job is done and won, he admits to being eager to “disappear” for a time.

“I am absolutely glad it is over. Now I can be more available to my family and to our family’s other two businesses – online sexual health clinic Stigma Health, and private spinal and neuro rehab business Breaking Boundaries.”

Just days into his tenure, new pub owner Ashford offers nothing yet on plans for the Das Hund, but Sneddon says there could be announcements in coming weeks.

L-R: Lisa Ashford, (James’ father) Richard Sneddon, James Sneddon, Guy Ashford