The Virginia Federation of Food Banks needed the 58,000 square feet for a staging area to feed demand caused by the pandemic.
Christian Sowers cooked up the business concept while researching a career change from a family-owned real estate company in Chesterfield.
Roanoke-based Mill Mountain Coffee and Tea ran the Richmond coffee shop, which is now up for sale.
The company says it has sold 500,000 masks since March and that large corporate clients like Capital One are its biggest drivers.
The owner said the coronavirus pandemic doomed his West End restaurant because its space didn’t lend itself to distanced dining.
Chesterfield-based Olivian, which is currently producing 20 million masks per month, is rolling out a monthly subscription mask service to attract more clients.
“Richmond made sense” for BitterSweet Boutique’s fourth location, owner Paula Pekic said.
The pancake house chain will be the third restaurant in about five years at the 4,000-square-foot corner space, which was originally home to Family Meal.
The breakfast chain said it likes the stability of the area’s customer base but some mall eateries, such as Mexican restaurant La Hacienda, have shut down recently.
The co-owners of the home-based company in Midlothian, Jay and Alexis Carpenter, are keeping their full-time jobs at Fahrenheit Advisors and NVR Mortgage.