Carrie Rengers

Corporate Caterers of Wichita owner downsizes

You’ll still see Ben Arnold of Corporate Caterers of Wichita around town, but you may soon hear a new word out of his mouth.
You’ll still see Ben Arnold of Corporate Caterers of Wichita around town, but you may soon hear a new word out of his mouth. The Wichita Eagle

UPDATED – Lots of people resolve to simplify their lives with the new year, but Ben Arnold is doing it.

The owner of Corporate Caterers of Wichita has sold Cafe Intrust and Cafe 151 to his former partner, Dwight Wells, in an effort to downsize.

“I need to be smaller,” Arnold says. “I’m 52, and I’m not getting younger.”

He says he plans to cut his sales by about $1.4 million this year and $600,000 next year.

Arnold also is cutting his fleet of nine vehicles to five and limiting the number of weddings and other events he’ll do in a day. Also, jobs now need to have a minimum order of 50.

“The biggest change is people are going to hear me say no for the first time,” Arnold says.

He says he doesn’t want clients to panic, though.

“We’ll still take care of them until they can find someone.”

Arnold plans to work at least five more years and says he’s still too young to sell the business.

“What am I going to do then? Drive my wife crazy?”

By reducing his business but not selling, Arnold says, he can have something to occupy his time and still “visit my grandkids a little more and go to church once or twice a month.”

Carrie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @CarrieRengers

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