No Grease Barbershop to remain at Charlotte mall days after being told by management to vacate

Updated: Mar. 3, 2021 at 7:09 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - After an overwhelming push from the community, No Grease Knights of the Razor Barbershop will be staying at SouthPark Mall for the duration of their lease.

The owners of No Grease Knights of the Razor Barbershop, a Black barbershop in SouthPark Mall, finally heard from mall management.

SouthPark Mall management sent WBTV this statement:

“We are pleased to report that Knights of the Razor by No Grease will be staying at SouthPark for the duration of their temporary lease. We have delayed our other deal until next year and will be discussing with Mr. Damian Johnson and Mr. Jermaine Johnson the possibility of a permanent location for their barbershop beyond their current temporary lease term. Our other 4 locations with No Grease are all permanent leases. We’ve enjoyed a productive and growing relationship with No Grease for the past decade and look forward to expanding our relationship in the future.”

This comes after SouthPark Mall management suddenly terminated the temporary lease agreement of the barbershop.

The barbershop owners Damian Johnson and Jermaine Johnson had previously been told they needed to leave the mall by April 1.

However, a push by the community helped sway mall management to keep the barbershop. On Wednesday, the mall said it had delayed the deal with the other tenant.

The lease states SouthPark Mall has the right to terminate a lease without cause, but Johnson was just taken aback by the abrupt decision.

Johnson said it was a dream come true to open at the upscale mall.

He said since he was told he had to vacate - there have been some restless nights.

Since Johnson got word to vacate, there has been action.

The community became outraged and started to send letters and emails to Simon Properties, which owns and operates SouthPark Mall.

Johnson said people who are frequent customers of the mall even weighed in to voice their disappointment.

“The support,” Johnson said. “The love, the phone calls, the social media has been overwhelming and we are very thankful and grateful that Charlotte has stood up for us. And it’s because of them we’re probably having this conversation with Simon Property.”

Tuesday Simon Properties released this statement.

“We have always had a positive working relationship with Mr. Damian Johnson and Mr. Jermaine Johnson. We currently have five No Grease barbershop locations with them at Concord Mills (2 locations), Charlotte Premium Outlets, Sugarloaf Mills and SouthPark Mall and are open to adding more locations in the future based on their interest.

With respect to their Knights of the Razor by No Grease barbershop at SouthPark Mall, which is on a temporary lease, we have reached out to them and are currently in conversations to resolve the situation in a fair and equitable manner.”

Johnson said this issue has gone beyond No Grease Barbershop. He hopes this incident will promote change when it comes to fighting for the little man.

“At the end of this we want some solutions on the table for small businesses as a whole,” Johnson said. “How we can really have the sustainable growth opportunities for small businesses and we need to correct some of the old business practices.”

No Grease has been in the Charlotte community for nearly 25 years.

It has about 10 shops.

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