Smoothie Factory Franchise Offers Advantages

Monday, April 06, 2009

Company: Smoothie Factory, 14909 W 119th St., Olathe; 913-768-6500,

About the company: Smoothie Factory is a health and wellness cafe.

Owners: Melissa Mickelson and Alejandro Piper.

Why open a business in this industry? "Melissa and I have always been health-conscious people. We wanted to open a business that would provide a healthy outlet to people at an affordable price," Piper said.

How long did it take you to start your business? "The process began in October 2007. We looked at several different smoothie shops, researched the number of locations and how long they had been around. Once we narrowed our search, we went to visit the corporate offices of the ones that we liked, sampled the products and asked a lot of questions. We inquired about the support from building the location out all the way to when the doors were opened. We were able to open our doors on Sept. 4, 2008." What made you decide to go with a franchise? "A franchise gave us a solid, proven business model as opposed to having to create one of our own. The other most important aspect was the buying power that an established business has over a new startup business that has allowed us to provide our product at a lower price." Why this franchise? "Smoothie Factory provided a much healthier product. The franchise support and overall scheme of the stores was also appealing." What kind of support do you receive as a franchise owner/operator? "Advertising support and product information. The biggest is the vendor pricing." Were there any challenges with financing? "We were able to get an interest-only loan for six months to help us get on our feet. We were also able to lower startup costs by working with our vendors on a payment plan for some of the real expensive purchases we made such as signage and large supply orders. We found that people are looking for business and will offer many options to help." How did you select your location and how big is it? "Olathe Pointe gave us great visibility near local gyms and schools, a busy intersection and ease in getting to our store. All of these things were important factors in site selection. The store is 1,250 square feet." You opened your business in September, just as the economy really started to slide. Has this been a special challenge? "Direct marketing and scheduling a grand opening helped us. Getting involved with the Olathe Chamber of Commerce before we were open was also very beneficial. We went to chamber meetings to announce our opening and also went literally business to business and to local high schools and gyms. This direct marketing approach was inexpensive and effective." What advice would give to anyone wanting to open a business in this economy? "Prepare for slow times financially. Make sure that you save or that you have a decent amount of working capital to help you get through these difficult times. Control your costs and spend your marketing dollars wisely."

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The Smoothie Factory, Inc.
2811 McKinney Ave Ste 354
Dallas, TX

Phone: (214) 302-5979
Toll Free: 1-87-SMOOTHIE
Fax: 214.792.9360

Smoothie Factory Franchise Information

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