Local balloon shop competing with big companies to stay in business


LUBBOCK, Texas — President of Balloons by the Bunch, Robby Bunch, said Valentine’s Day used to be one of his busiest days of the year.

“Back in 2001 we were doing between three to four hundred pickups and deliveries a week
for Valentine’s week,” Bunch said. “And now we’re down to 55 last year.”

Bunch said the low supply of helium has driven the price up, and makes it tough to compete with large chain stores that sell balloons.

“I don’t have the inventory,” Bunch said. “I can’t get the price break on helium and that means that they can sell it less than me.”

Bunch said with MRI machines and space programs using helium, shops are low on the priority list.

In the future, Bunch said he wouldn’t be surprised if balloons were no longer at birthday parties in 10 years. However, Bunch said he still remains passionate about the shop he created forty years ago.

“They move, they’re alive,” Bunch said. “They’re vivid and colorful and just add everything to an event. “It’s fun to bring a smile to somebody’s face.”

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