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From Colombia to San Jose: Footprints Floors Opened Doors for Juan Carlos Hernandez

This franchising opportunity provides Hernandez with everything he needs to run his own business in the U.S., visa included, while keeping startup costs low.

By Erica InmanStaff Writer
9:09AM 12/11/23

Juan Carlos Hernandez, originally from Colombia, is looking forward to his big move to San Jose as he gets started with his own Footprints Floors* franchise in December. Several years ago, he tried to retire, but soon realized his mindset was fixated on working, and he wasn’t quite ready to turn in the towel. 

In looking for opportunities in the U.S., Hernandez realized that his best option for running a business, and securing a visa that allowed him to do so, was through franchising. Footprints Floors appealed to Hernandez because of an immediate, tangible feeling of warmth and humanity within the company. 

1851 Franchise recently spoke with Hernandez to find out more about his journey into franchising.


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

Hernandez: I am a business administrator, and I started out in Colombia. I worked for 23 years with one of the biggest companies in Colombia. The newspaper I worked for was sold, so I retired. 

Now, I have an enterprise here: a butchering company that sells meat. I am working there currently. I built the company myself and made money. I wanted to have something of my own. 

I bought the [Footprints Floors] franchise in San Jose, and I'm going to go to live there in San Jose and start this new part of my life.

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?

Hernandez: I found a company in Texas that helps you to find a franchise, so I was looking for something and they reduced the number of options. I chose Footprint Floors because I like the company and the business they are in. I don't know a lot about floors, but it’s very interesting.

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

Hernandez: I think the owner of the company is great. That was the biggest factor for me. He’s a really nice person, and I like that. He cares about people.

Also, I like that you don't have to have inventory because you don't sell the floors. Some companies require you to put a lot of money in to build up the inventory. With Footprints, you don't need to do that because you are only installing the floors.

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

Hernandez: I will see what happens. It's all new for me: the flooring industry, the city. I plan to learn more about the franchise and open another territory very soon. 

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

Hernandez: I am from Colombia. I grew up here and I like it, but I think the U.S. has a lot of opportunities so that is where I want to spend my life. 

San Jose, California is beautiful. I want to spend some time there. I have a friend who is coming to work with me. He's also from Colombia but started living in San Jose a few years ago. All my life, I have worked in administration and finance. I am not a good salesperson, but I will become one because I have to. My friend is good at that, so I think we will make a good team.

When we sold the newspaper, I decided not to work more in my life, but that is impossible when you are so used to working. It’s in your mindset. From that, I began the butchery so I would have something to do. Now I think Footprints is another challenge. Several years ago, I thought I was very old and I needed to rest. Now I am realizing 55 is not too old.

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

Hernandez: I think there were three different options to get my visa. One was to start a company, and make all the plans. The second option was to buy a company that was already working. The third was for the franchise. I think the franchise is the best of the three options. You have support: a strong backing from the franchisor. 

Footprints Floors has 15 years of experience. They show you how you have to do everything. If you follow their lead, you are going to be successful. That is the best way to start a business in the U.S.

To find out more information about costs to buy this franchise, please visit 


Upon his return to Littleton, Colorado, after serving in the U.S. Air Force, Bryan Park noticed that Denver’s flooring industry lacked a higher level of customer service and sophistication. So, in 2008, he founded Footprints Floors, which today specializes in installing hardwood floors, tile floors, backsplashes and laminates. With more than 160 territories, Footprints Floors offers franchisees a robust support system, including a call center, flexible hours for work-life balance and a low cost of entry with outstanding economics.. For more information about the Franchise Times Top 500 brand, visit

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