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Chilean Entrepreneur Chooses Fresh Coat Painters to Pursue the American Dream

In his first United States-based business endeavor, Gabriel Leyton is opening a Fresh Coat Painters to serve the residents of North Fort Myers and Punta Gorda, Florida.

Gabriel Leyton has been a successful entrepreneur in Santiago, Chile, for many years. In search of something that would diversify his portfolio in the United States, Leyton found Fresh Coat Painters, the industry-leading residential and commercial painting franchise. 

Leyton was blown away by how warm and welcoming the Fresh Coat leadership team was when he met with them. This, in combination with the business model that would allow him to spend more time with his family, is what sold him on the franchise. Now, Leyton is bringing the franchise to North Fort Myers and Punta Gorda, Florida, and hopes to make a permanent move to the U.S. in the next few years. 

1851 Franchise spoke to Leyton about his franchise journey with Fresh Coat Painters and his plans for the future. 

1851 Franchise: Frame your personal story for us. What did you do before franchising, and how did you decide franchising made sense for you?

Leyton: I am married and I have three children. I currently live in Santiago, Chile. I am an agronomist and work in forestry. I dedicated 12 years of my life to this industry to help agricultural people to improve their business. I worked in a private consulting company based on innovation in agriculture and the food industry, then I worked in a financial role for a real estate company based in tourism. I’m currently working in this company, while also taking on an entrepreneurial role in technology. I also have a company in real estate for residential buildings. 

I wanted to go into franchising because my wife and I wanted to diversify the business. We opened all the businesses in Chile and we wanted to move to the United States within the next few years. We think the culture and country are very interesting. We also think it will be a good experience for our children. We started to search for different kinds of businesses in the United States and saw that franchising was the best option for us. We feel that the franchise has a very good atmosphere, and very warm people. 

1851: What was your perception of franchising prior to becoming a franchisee, and what do you want people to know about franchising now that you are in it?

Leyton: I hadn't known anything before we started the process. The painting business was very interesting for different reasons, and one of them was that it is not a very heavy business. It's a lighter business because you don't need to have a store, like a restaurant or a gas station, for example. 

1851: What made you pick this brand? What excites you most about this company?

Leyton: The people. Everyone was so warm from the beginning. The brand and people have such a high quality and standard. 

1851: What do you hope to achieve with your business? What are your plans for growth? 

Leyton: I plan to follow all the protocol that the franchise recommends. I think this is the key, to follow what the franchisor says to do. 

1851: What is the one thing about your story you want us to know?

Leyton: This business will allow me to have more time with my family, which is very important to me. Investing in a franchise allows me to dedicate more time to them, because it is less time-consuming than the other businesses I've done.  

1851: What advice do you have for other people thinking about becoming a franchise owner?

Leyton: The franchise has a very good support team to support. You’re not alone in the business, which is very important. It's a very good combination of a good possibility to have a profit with a lot of support from the franchisor. 


Fresh Coat Painters, the residential and commercial painting franchise under the Strategic Franchising Systems umbrella, offers a low-cost, high-margin business model that gives entrepreneurs from all walks of life the chance to become successful business owners in the communities they serve. Since starting in 2004, Fresh Coat has expanded to over 170 franchise locations nationwide. Thanks to its unparalleled professionalism and affordable business model, it has become one of the leading concepts in the booming residential and commercial painting segment. With continued year-over-year growth, Fresh Coat is well on its way to achieving its overall goal of becoming a truly iconic painting brand.

*This brand is a paid partner of 1851 Franchise. For more information on paid partnerships please click here.