Five weeks after the state began accepting online bids for its liquor stores, the Sammamish and Issaquah locations were sold for a combined $451,000.
The Sammamish store, located at 510 228th Ave. NE, was claimed by local resident Jin Kim with a bid of $200,100, while Leon Capelouto of Seattle won the Issaquah store, at 1175 NW Gilman Blvd., with a bid of $251,000.
Kim, who said she has lived in Sammamish for more than seven years, wasn’t ready to comment on her purchase, but said she doesn’t own any other businesses in the area.
Capelouto, who has yet to respond to The Reporter’s attempts to contact him, also successfully won the bid for the West Seattle store located at 4100 S.W. Alaska St for $225,445.
He told the West Seattle Herald that he plans to make very few changes at his Issaquah location.
“It’s a very good store, great employees out there and most of them want to stay,” Capelouto said.
The Washington State Liquor Control Board began auctioning its stores March 15 to meet the requirements of voter-approved initiative 1183, which required the state to get out of the booze business.
The WSLCB awarded 121 bidders license application rights for the 167 state-run stores. The winning bidders earned exclusive rights to apply for a liquor license at the stores’ current locations — allowing the buyers to potentially sell liquor in stores under the required 10,000-square-foot minimum.
The state sold its 167 stores for a total of $30.75 million. The most expensive bid was for $750,100 for a store in Tacoma, while the lowest bid was for $49,600 for a store in Spokane.
Large stores can begin selling hard liquor as soon as June 1.