Suppose you could buy up brands in four segments of the experience entertainment category—pedal pubs, escape rooms, ax-throwing spaces and emerging brands (also known as whatever people come up with next)—and franchise them. Sound like a fun business?
Like many millennials at 25 years old, Wingstop is now maturing. The company got its own place, is focused on self-improvement and is becoming more globally minded.
Imagine yourself sitting outside in a beer garden on a sunny day. Puppies are running around and you're sipping a Barkarita during Yappy Hour, chatting with some friends. A few Bark Rangers are even patrolling the area, filling up water bowls and cleaning up after your dog.
Urban markets don't always equal higher sales, and for Bennigan's, Beef ‘O' Brady's and A&W, sometimes success comes in a smaller town. While these brands are facing new challenges amid the pandemic, their market strategy could position them better for a comeback.
It was in 2009 that Gabriel, Dina Kimmel's son, was diagnosed with moderate to severe autism spectrum disorder. Kimmel remembers the time well as her family could hardly visit any playgrounds without being asked to leave. After the fifth such experience, she was fed up and decided to create a private gym in her bedroom—one that both Gabriel and her neurotypical daughter, Sophia, could play in.
David Burns was ready for a change. After owning a FirstLight B2C senior care franchise for eight years, he decided to make the move to a B2B model. Extensive research led him to Pirtek, the hydraulic and industrial hose replacement service franchise, and he liked what he saw.
The boutique fitness boom continues, but brands must work harder to demonstrate how they're different—both to potential franchisees and members—as they aim to stand out in this increasingly competitive space. Meet four more franchises that have their eye on growth.
In a surprise shake-up, Krystal has a new president and COO who is leaning on his deep operational background to continue pivoting the company toward growth.
Franchisee Jay Palmer handles every customer complaint himself and also spotlights sales rock stars to help build a strong culture.
Ace Hardware, No. 5 on this year's Franchise Times Top 200+ list, plans a major franchising push starting the second quarter of next year for Handyman Matters, the Denver-based home improvement service chain Ace acquired in September.
Growing up in a family gelato shop in the picturesque Tuscany region of Italy sounds like a dreamy life. And it was. But as Diego Comparin got older, his overwhelming passion for the Italian sweet his family made led him far from that charming life. But when Franchise Times caught up with him, he just happened to be vacationing back home with the family.
Sheldon Simeon's parents made their poké with oyster sauce. “It's not traditionally Hawaiian but its traditional for my family,” says Simeon, an example that underscores the nuances of Hawaiian cuisine and illustrates the blurring of lines between the many cultures that influence the food of the islands.
When you're known for being a top operator, sellers start coming to you, says Trey Owen, CEO of the largest Planet Fitness franchisee, in an interview to kick off Franchise Times' year-round Dealmakers coverage.
Being the first franchisee for a system is a leap of faith, but for the first operators in Naf Naf Grill it's a leap they've taken before.
Who would play you in the biopic about your life? Probably Leonardo DiCaprio, for sure. I don't know why. I love him in ‘Wolf of Wall Street' and his hustle as an entrepreneur.
When its 150th Popeyes restaurant opened in July, Guillermo Perales and Dallas-based Sun Holdings crossed the 1,000-store mark with nine brands.
“Launch is not a trampoline park. Why? Because trampoline parks are dead,” declared Brad Artery, COO of the Rhode Island-based family entertainment franchise that has undergone a complete transformation since its first park opened in 2012.
Some people dream about retiring and then sailing into the sunset, but longtime franchise finance pro Bob Solliday is finding a way to build a second career of sorts on the high seas.
Think you're busy? Consider the plight of QSR cashiers answering calls while taking in-person orders and coordinating with the back of the house to expedite food. It's not easy, and we've all been on the other side, calling in to place an order and immediately being put on hold.
To provide opportunities for her people—and shift into a smaller footprint model—Dianne Mayer adds Blaze Pizza, keeping in mind the need to ‘show up every day' as her portfolio continues to grow.
They say follow your passion when choosing a franchise; the car enthusiasts at Detail Garage are Exhibit A. One describes his ‘childhood dream car,' a Honda S2000. Another prefers a ‘68 Camaro. All host monthly Rides & Coffee events, where customers can ogle other autos.
When Dean Fisher works with Carstar collision repair franchisees who want to go to the next level, he suggests handing out packets of sticky notes in different colors.
Many of the most desirable cities have become unaffordable for middle- and lower-income Americans, to the point that it's time to adjust business plans to reflect the difficulty of doing business in places where employees can't afford to live anywhere near their jobs.
Red is the traditional color for flags of Persian Gulf states. The five points of the white serrated band represent the five pillars of Islam. Until 2002, the flag had eight white points, but this was reduced to five to avoid confusion with the Qatari flag.
Franchises are under intense pressure to stand out in a crowd, but it's hard to know where to focus time, energy and resources. Smartly scrutinized data, Living Large bosses say, can help identify key opportunities.
“We're really good at what we do,” says Mike Knapick, who with his brother, Andy, earned their franchising chops developing top-performing Jimmy John's locations and today own 10 Dunkin', three Bar Louie and three CoreLife Eatery locations.
No sooner had I started reporting this column on the slew of new labor regulations at the state and local levels, than Exhibit A landed in my in box.
Samuel Johnson wrote, “… when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”
It's that time of year again when you've completed your summer reading list and are ramping up your marketing strategy around budget talks for next year. What story are you telling with your business? And what tools are you using to tell it?
After 11 years, Marcus Gardner believes he has finally protected his business from direct competitors. What's more, in the process of defensively adding more territories in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex—three within the last two years alone—he estimates revenue will swell to more than $5 million over the next two years.
It's starting to sound like a broken record: restaurant traffic officially returned to negative status in the second quarter of 2019 after a brief and lackluster push into positive territory since Q3 of 2018.
In 1987, microbiologist Curt Jones decided to pour liquid nitrogen on top of ice cream for the first time, creating a flash-frozen treat. Three decades later, David Leonardo, the recently hired CEO of Chill-N Nitrogen Ice Cream, is looking to take Jones' discovery to new heights—and new locations across the U.S.
Though she was among the youngest IHOP franchisees in the country when she opened her first New Jersey restaurant at 27, Adenah Bayoh's business acumen was evident much earlier as a 6-year-old navigating the market in her Liberian village of Foya. Her grandmother sold bread at the market and “I'd carry it around in a basket on my head,” Bayoh says. “I had the idea to lower the price at the end of the day to get rid of inventory and my bread basket would be completely empty.”
Tom Garrett is charting an impressive course at GPS Hospitality, thanks in part to top execs who answered his call and share his motivation to grow. Approaching $600 million in sales from 400-plus Burger King and Popeyes restaurants, GPS is on its way to a new target. Can Garrett guide it all the way?
In 2015 Applebee's raked in more than $5 billion in systemwide sales, but as fresh competition sought to lure away customers and changing consumer tastes and new technologies emerged, the legacy brand floundered. By 2017, sales were in a free-fall, dropping more than $600 million to $4.4 billion. Julia Stewart, longtime CEO of parent company Dine Brands Global, resigned and Applebee's had been without a brand president since Steven Layt's own resignation in late 2015.
For those who know next to nothing about whiskey (aka me), flipping through the hefty drink menu listing 100-plus options at Big Whiskey's is a bit intimidating. Luckily my (initial) confusion was short-lived as our bartender at the concept's first franchise location in Las Vegas quickly steered me toward the Flights section as the best way for an amateur to acquaint herself with the world of whiskey.
Who would play you in the biopic about your life? I would hope Sandra Bullock. Reputationally she's got a perception and she's played roles of no bullshit and also lighthearted, so that seems fitting.
Neal Courtney's young daughter “was an absolute nightmare when it was time to get her hair cut,” he says. That changed when he and his wife, Alexis, brought their daughter to a local Cookie Cutters Haircuts for Kids shop and she “picked out a hot pink car and turned on ‘Dora the Explorer.'”
When Shannon Tolbert, formerly a marketing exec with GE Capital Franchise Finance, decided to jump across the table and become a franchise owner, she quickly zeroed in on Modern Acupuncture and was set to buy a unit of the Scottsdale, Arizona-based emerging brand.
Just days into Dog Haus' launch at the new Kitchen United mobile-ordering-only space in Chicago and franchisee Jesse Koontz was doing about $800 in delivery orders per day, with one Friday spiking to $1,500.
A focus on unit-level leadership helps Mike Hamra turn lemon locations into superstars. And when it comes to acquisitions, ‘you have to see a way to enhance value,' he says.
Dining with children can be quite an adventure. Is the little one going to quietly draw or play with a device or will they throw a tantrum and hurl food across the floor? It's a guessing game most parents know all too well.
February 17th, 2021
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