Marilyn Monroe Spas raises $20 million
The beauty of Marilyn Monroe—the spa concept, not the legendary seductress—is that the founders know how to both operate spas and raise money.
Marilyn Monroe Spas, a franchise based in Orlando with 10 locations in four states, has attracted a suitor, JCR Holdings, a Brazilian company who has invested $20 million to help build a national brand for what they see as a fragmented industry.
Fabricio Bossie, managing partner of JCR, will join the company’s board, according to Al Weiss, a former Disney executive who is heading up the company, along with its founder, Niki T. Kearn. JCR, which will be "acting like a private equity fund," Weiss said. The franchise was granted an exclusive licensing agreement in 2012 to use the Marilyn Monroe moniker from Authentic Brands Group, which owns the rights to the deceased actress’s estate. The brand was launched that same year.
The infusion of capital will be used to expand the brand’s three models—spas, nail salons and Glamour Rooms—Weis said, plus, “a big chunk of the capital” will go to fund the creation of the Marilyn Monroe Spa and Glamour Institute, which will teach both technical (beauty and wellness training) and business education.
“A passion of Niki’s is the institute,” Weiss said. “It’s teaching them (women) to have a career and then how to become a leader and owner.”
The brand is registered in all states and has seen interest from foreign developers, as well, as domestically, Weiss said. Including this latest round of capital, the franchise has raised $36 million to date and has no debt, Weis pointed out.