Looking to buy a franchise or just curious about what there is out there? These 4 franchises are some of the more unique ones which popped up at the International Franchise Expo in New York. Get the details on them here!
Unusual Franchise Opportunities
At this year’s International Franchise Expo in New York, you could sample several brands of frozen yogurt, check out a vast array of burger concepts and educate yourself in the various methods that can be used to teach young children. There is, it seems, a franchise for every interest and area of expertise.
Including some unusual ones. Tucked among the tried-and-true franchise opportunities — think fast-food and cafes — were some new and unique franchise concepts that entrepreneurs were looking grow.
We Do Lines
Number of franchises: 10
Year started franchising: 2009
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The owners of We Do Lines – Daniel Rella, Chris Couri and Tom Darrow – came to the parking-lot striping business somewhat by accident. The three, who owned landscaping businesses in Connecticut, needed their parking lot re-striped, but had a hard time finding someone to do it. So, they started a part-time business that fairly quickly turned into a fulltime gig. Eventually they gave up landscaping for lines, and haven’t looked back.
The Connecticut-based We Do Lines has lined parking lots from Jet Blue’s terminal at JFK to golf courses in Miami. With 10 franchises currently, it is looking to expand.
“We’ll teach you everything you need to know,” says Rella. And you don’t even have to worry about traffic, which are the responsibility of local municipalities. “We don’t do roadways,” says COO Darrow. “But we love to do golf courses.
Number of franchises: 3
Year started franchising: 2011
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Jason Parker, owner of K-9 Resorts, began his business with his brother Stephen as a dog-walking business back in 1999. By 2005, the siblings had opened their first luxury hotel for dogs in New Jersey. The cage-free environment includes private rooms for dogs with plasma TVs (tuned to Animal Planet), high-end dog food and a window in every room.
“People want the best for their dogs,” said Parker. “They want to go away knowing their pet is safe, healthy and happy. So we offer the Ritz Carlton of dog hotels.”
Number of franchises: 109
Year started franchising: 2005
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Three former college soccer players found a way to extend their careers after graduation by forming Soccer Shots, which offers kids ages 2 to 8 an introduction to basic soccer skills.
“We have franchisees that are young couples, up to retirees,” said Justin Bredeman, vice president of recruitment for Soccer Shots. “You don’t have to be a professional soccer player to do this. But, for someone who has played the sport and wants to be an entrepreneur, this is a great opportunity.”
Franchisees often conduct programs at preschools, daycares and community centers. The emphasis is on having fun as opposed to creating mini-Ronaldos and Hope Solos, says Bredeman. “Basically, if you love kids and want sports to be fun for kids, this could be for you.”
Number of franchises: 479
Year started franchising: 1992
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Where do you go when that battery in your mobile phone needs to be replaced? “Not where you bought the device,” says Rod Tremelling, director of franchise development for Batteries Plus. “They will sell you a new device. Come to us, and we’ll help you extend the life of your product.”
This place goes beyond AAs and D cells (although if you need those, Batteries Plus will sell them too) – it stocks batteries for things you didn’t even know had batteries. Like the one inside the casing for automatic blinds. When that battery goes, you’re in the dark. Tremelling said his store owners know how to rebuild the battery and can get your shades functioning again in 10 minutes.
Commercial operations, municipalities and police departments are also big clients, he said. “As a society we have become more and more mobile. Everything runs on batteries. And everyone needs batteries.”
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