BRUSSELS: An iconic Brussels café and brasserie in St Gilles has taken to crowdfunding to try and save itself from the jaws of bankruptcy.
Brasserie Verschueren has raised EUR 3,680 out of a target of EUR 20,000 from 127 growfunders. The campaign will last 14 days.
The Brasserie is asking for contributions from EUR 10 to EUR 1,500 with a promise of a warm welcome from the owners and staff as well as a beer on the house upon the reopening of the café after bars and cafés are allowed to reopen COVID-19 permitting.
Robert, the owner of the iconic café said that he never managed that he would be in this situation one year ago but five months of lockdown have had a dramatic impact on the business.
He said that despite two months of reduction in rent from the landlord, this was not enough to save the cafe. The bank had not been forthcoming and support from the local authorities was not available to those who had at least 10 full-time employees. “Tell me, which café has 10 full time employees,” he said.
Frustrated, he said that during the second lockdown, his staff proposed that they would prepare takeaway as well as sell their beer Triple Verschueren. After two days, he received an official letter saying that it was not possible for cafés to offer takeaways as this was only possible for restaurants.
He said that what concerns him most is that many Belgian cafés are facing the same situation and a large part of Belgian heritage will disappear after this crisis.
The beer from the brasserie is also available here for those who want to support this café.