It’s very beneficial for today’s potential franchise owners to get a feel of the opportunities they’re interested in from a lot of different angles.
Existing franchisees are a great source of information about the opportunity. Franchise executives are, too.
That’s why we reached out to Chris Adkins, who’s the VP of Franchise Sales for The UPS Store®. Chris was kind enough to answer a few questions about The UPS Store franchise business opportunity for you; my valued readers and blog subscribers. You are welcome to read about Chris and what he brings to the franchise table, here, before you dig in to my interview of him.
One more thing: The UPS Store® is a featured advertiser on The Franchise Biz Directory.
Franchise Interviews: The UPS Store®
Me: Please describe the relationship between UPS and The UPS Store? How do you work together?
Chris: We’re proud to wear the recognizable UPS shield and to offer shipping from the world’s largest package delivery company.
We began in 1980 as Mail Boxes Etc., a convenient alternative to the post office. In 2001, UPS acquired Mail Boxes Etc., Inc. In 2003, the two companies introduced The UPS Store brand. Today, The UPS Store is a wholly owned subsidiary of UPS; our centers remain locally owned and operated, and continue to offer a variety of shipping, freight, postal, digital online printing, document and business services, with convenient locations and world-class service.
We share a lot in common with our parent brand, but work closest with UPS on packing and shipping services.
Me: What makes The UPS Store stand out in today’s sea of franchise opportunities being offered?
Chris: The UPS Store is the world’s largest franchisor of retail shipping, postal, printing and business service centers. We have over thirty years of experience franchising, and it shows in the quality of our centers, franchisees and operations.
We’ve got recognition on a national level for the great relationships we have with our franchisees and they have with their customers. We’ve been recognized as a top retail brand by The Business Journals’ American Brand Excellence Awards and have been ranked number one in the postal and business services category for 24 consecutive years by Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500.
The UPS Store also offers our franchisees the benefits of national advertising and marketing campaigns. These national campaigns build strong brand awareness, while regional efforts and local store marketing build excitement on the local level. We work with franchisees on a regular basis to promote their efforts on all levels.
We’re also here to help our franchisees grow. Approximately 48 percent of our franchisees own multiple The UPS Store locations. For qualified franchisees, we may offer reduced franchise fees and specialized training and discounts to help with expansion
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Me: What types of people make good or great franchisees-and why?
Chris: Many different types of people have found success in a franchise system. People with entrepreneurial spirit and passion for running their own business, but with the support of a network, and all the resources that come with that behind them really tend to thrive.
Opening a UPS Store is for individuals who like to help others succeed. Our focus on small business services provides endless opportunities to make an impact on the lives and livelihoods of others. We seek individuals with a passion for running a business, being their own boss and working with people.
That being said, UPS Store franchises are owned by people from all walks of life and there is an opportunity for anyone who is committed to serving the small business community. Entrepreneurs, corporate leaders, veterans, retirees, white collar professionals and more thrive as UPS Store franchise owners.
Me: What kind of support do you provide franchisees? Do you have a specific support experience you’d like to share that will help would-be franchise owners of your brand understand why you’re brand is so good?
Chris: As part of our training program, new franchisees go through extensive online training, spend a total of two weeks working in an existing UPS Store center and spend another two weeks at The UPS Store University at our corporate campus in San Diego. Three of those days include an intense, hands-on print training module.
We also host a three-day convention for our franchisee network every other year. Members of our leadership team provide updates on the business, our support teams present franchisees new developments and coaching in specific areas of expertise (UPS Store profitability, marketing, new products/services) and there are speakers and experts of all disciplines presenting on topics such as strategy and new technology. The convention also offers franchisees a chance to network with others and share best practices.
That is just the beginning; we continue to offer training and educational opportunities, as well as a great support system here at our headquarters to our franchisees.
Me: What else would you like to share with my readers? Why should they contact your franchise development department to learn more about your opportunity to be their own bosses?
Chris: We offer extensive training and franchise support so that our franchisees never feel alone during their experience from aspiring entrepreneur to established local business owner. A UPS Store franchise opportunity truly offers personal and financial freedom, with all the tools you would need to succeed in business.
For more information about The UPS Store franchise opportunities visit www.theupsstorefranchise.com. We regularly hold live webinars to get your questions answered; they are approximately one hour long and include time for Q&A to answer any additional questions.
Me: Talk to me about 3D Printing. What’s in store for The UPS Store franchisees? How will they be able to capitalize on this very sought-after technology?
Chris: We initially launched 3D printing last year in six markets and saw great success. Following that success, we opened up 3D printing services to all of our franchisees and saw a lot of interest—so much so that the 3D printing will be offered in nearly 100 additional markets this year.
If a franchise chooses to opt in, we will install professional-grade printers, the Stratasys uPrint SE Plus, in their center. These printers accurately and reliably produce complex engineering parts, prototypes and one-of-a-kind objects. Franchisees will also receive training and ongoing support from The UPS Store and Stratasys 3D print experts.
Here’s a great example of how a UPS Store franchisee helped two entrepreneurs bring their invention into a marketable product: Click- 3D Print Turns a DIY Surf Gadget Into a Marketable Product
Me: Is there anything new coming down the pike that prospective franchise owners should know about?
Chris: We currently have over 4,400 locations across the country and will continue to grow. In 2015, we will be focusing on growing our non-traditional locations, such as hotels, university campuses, military bases, convention centers and airports.
That’s great to hear! Thank you for those very informative answers, Chris.
To learn more about The UPS Store franchise business opportunity, contact their franchise team.