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Old 04-15-2011, 11:23 PM   #21
"Quality" is my first name.
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Some input from me... lol

1- dont get a business partner. sooner or later 1 does more than the other and someone gets pissed. if you need a partner then atleast make yourself the controlling partner. To further make life easier include in your shareholder agreement a shotgun clause.
Stuff in writing in the beginning seems like a pain, but trust me, in the end it will save your stress, mind and pocket book.

2-People want fitness, but mostly people NEED food. Starting your own company vs buying a franchise has its pros as well as cons, but perhaps as your own company brand you can carry organic foods?? Franchise buy in bulk and major cost savings vs indie shop. I know a guy locally who just opened a health store (supplements, bars etc) and from what i see, he is slow (not him, the store). Its a beautiful shop beside a gym in a major city.

I have always thought opening a juice bar IN a gym would be the wisest. Most gyms dont want to deal with that bs, so they have vending machines. Locate yourself in 5-10 gyms, pay some big boobied babe $10 hour to make smoothies and win.

PS. create your own brand / product, sell at your own stores, then consign them to other shops.
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:05 PM   #22
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I think the bottom line advice is to visit another location that has this franchise. Talk to the owner and see how happy they are. I'd spend 2 months and $5000 doing this before sticking $130K into it.

What I learned from my business - I was a dialup ISP from the beginning to the end (1991-1999) and then sold right before the bubble burst.

1) You can never have too much cash. We financed the business through credit cards and it really screwed us. We pretty much had to because there was no difference in the banks eyes between BBS/Internet and the phone sex industry (remember, this was in the early 90's).

2) Be prepared to work 80 hours a week. I did not take a single day off for almost 10 years. I was working a 12 hour job (4 days/nights a week) as well as running the business.

3) Don't make stupid mistakes. I'm not sure how to know when they are stupid before hand but you definitely will after. My big mistake was having bad processors or something in a couple of the servers I had. I was crashing constantly and thought it was software. The new owner came in and invested in 4 new computers and the problem went away.

4) When stuff starts going to hell ask someone on the outside to look it over and tell you what you are doing wrong. Watch some back episodes of Kitchen Nightmares. All the stories are the same on failing businesses.

Good luck!
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