A month ago, Nick Stone had a $50 million coffee business, with dozens of cafes in bustling downtowns.
Now the coronavirus pandemic has eliminated 90 percent of Bluestone Lane’s revenue, and he has laid off some 700 workers. “Everything I’ve put into this, everything all these other people have put into building the company, basically evaporated in five days,” he said. “It’s just been devastating, absolutely devastating, for hospitality.”
Mr. Stone has kept 12 of his 52 stores — which sell pastries, sandwiches and other items in addition to coffee — open for curbside pickup and delivery in New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. He said he has been able to keep about 90 staff members working.