Customers of Tully’s Coffee in Tacoma will have to look elsewhere for their brew starting Saturday.
Visitors to the store at the corner of Broadway and 9th Street on Friday were told the store would be closing later that day. The Stadium District Tully’s closed Feb. 28, the company confirmed via Facebook earlier this week.
A sign in the window of the Stadium store reads, “Selling complete coffee equipment. Everything to set up your own store. Very reasonable.”
Workers at the Broadway store declined to comment, directing inquiries to the company’s marketing department. Tully’s officials have not responded to multiple requests for comment.
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Details on how long the closure will last remain unclear.
The Seattle Times reports that Tully’s notified its store managers via a memo on Thursday afternoon.
“At this time we have very minimal coffee left in stores,” Tully’s project director, Krystal Tonning, told the Times. “Our goal is to have Opus, Bostwick (Tacoma), Clyde Hill and New Main operational for (as) long as we can (Friday), but by end of day today all other retail business is temporarily suspended until coffee deliveries resume.”
It's the latest in a string of financial and legal troubles for Tully's, which closed some stores late last year after being sued for back rent. It was purchased out of bankruptcy in 2013 by Michael J. Avenatti — better known today as the attorney for Stormy Daniels, the porn star who was paid $130,000 in 2016 to keep quiet about an alleged affair with Donald Trump.
Company spokeswoman Suzy Quinn told The Times that Avenatti no longer owns Tully's but is its general counsel. In an email to the newspaper, she did not address the lack of supplies, but instead said the closures “relate to beginning the rebranding process, which takes months.”
The Tully's email, which was reviewed by the newspaper, acknowledged managers have been having a rough time.
"Before we discuss a plan moving forward, we really would like to take a moment to applaud and praise the efforts you have given this past week,” Tonning wrote. “The amount of flexibility, teamwork and overall positive morale given in an incredibly confusing, frustrating and simply difficult time is once again astonishing.”
It advised managers to pay employees for their full shift Thursday even if the store closed early, and it said workers could "use accrued sick or vacation time for missed shifts while the business is temporarily suspended."
The Times reported that when a reporter reached Tonning by phone, she hung up after a few seconds of conversation.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)