Starting a business is nowhere near a small feat. The amount of time and energy that goes into creating something out of next to nothing can be exhausting, draining and leave you feeling numb. In a sense, it is much like art. It is something you make from scratch that represents your vision and expresses your intentions.
This group of talented entrepreneurs topped our list of young franchisors to look out for in 2016.
In 2008, at 24, Drew French brought the idea of a fast casual, down-the-line pizza concept to a local bank to try and get funding to get it off the ground. Unfortunately, hindsight is 20/20—the bank said no to one of the first brands in one of the hottest food segments today. Fortunately for French, his father said “yes,” and shortly thereafter, the first Your Pie location was opened in Athens, Georgia. Fast forward to today. French’s innovative concept will end 2015 with 31 deals in 25 new locations set to open in 2016. A powerhouse in the making, French told 1851 that he is committed to expansion and foresees the craft pizza segment to remain strong in the future. For Jason and Steven Parker, creating a successful pet pampering business has been a walk in the park. Always wanting a pooch of their own, the brothers devised a way around the “no dogs allowed” house rule. In 1999, as early teenagers, the duo created a successful dog walking business. Several years later, after realizing the rising trend in the pet industry, the young duo of entrepreneurs continued to push their love for animals and created K-9 Resorts Daycare & Luxury Hotel, a brand equated to the Ritz Carlton of pet boarding facilities.
Today, after 10 years in business, this budding New Jersey based brand is looking at serious expansion, recently opening their first out of state location in Pennsylvania. K-9 Resorts is currently the number one rated boarding facility in New Jersey and has been ranked in the top three facilities in the country by I Heart Dogs, a popular dog enthusiast website.
Jennifer Beall started Tot Squad, a health and safety franchise that specializes in repairs, cleaning and installation of childcare equipment, with the idea of helping busy parents improve their work-life balance, as well as create flexible business ownership opportunities for women. Through her work on Tot Squad, Beall became very passionate about improving car seat safety, according to Tot Squad up to 90 percent of child car seats are improperly installed.
After announcing franchise sales availability recently, the fledgling franchise brand has over 350 leads in the pipeline and has plans to open the first franchised location in early 2016. Tot Squad currently has corporate locations in New York, Los Angeles, San Diego and Orange County, California.
Blair McDaniel, 33 – Alair
Starting in Canada, Blair McDaniel has been able to build a construction management network and successful franchise system from the ground up. With over 1,400 premier custom home and renovation contractor projects through Canada and the U.S., Alair Homes is on a tear since entering the U.S.
In high school, McDaniel spent evenings and weekends working on construction sites, which led him to pursue a degree in real estate appraisal. McDaniel later accepted a commercial construction opportunity after college that sent him to the far Western edges of Canada. Though he enjoyed spending his days on construction sites, McDaniel continued to pursue his true passion, entrepreneurship.
With big aspirations and the experience to put the pieces in order, McDaniel has plans to add 10-15 new regional partners in the U.S. in 2016 to help expand the brand.
In one of the most saturated industries, gyms and fitness concepts are extremely competitive and often have a hard time getting enough people motivated to hit the weights. Realizing this, innovative fitness guru, Josh York founder of GYMGUYZ, said screw it and decided to bring a highly capable staff of certified personal trainers to people’s homes. It’s a no brainer.
With state-of-the-art fitness technology, equipment and expertise on the move, York has been able to build a foothold on the at home fitness market rapidly growing his customer base and building a franchise system. With an extremely cost effective model and a drive to be the best, it seems there will be no stopping York in his quest to make America healthy again.