For former and new Minuteman Press franchise owners alike, conversions are a “Win-Win”
Independent print shop owners frequently find relief from challenges they face through the assistance of the number-one rated digital print, design and marketing franchisor, Minuteman Press International. If they are looking to enter a new chapter in their lives, finding buyers at a fair price on their own can be exhausting (and in some cases, not possible) so the dearth of hungry entrepreneurs that have been working with representatives from the well-respected, international franchisor are a blessing for those looking to sell their print businesses.
For the incoming owner, an established business with built in relationships is an immediate benefit of purchasing and converting an existing print shop without needing to start from scratch.
Add a busy client base and revenue to the power of a proven system, an immediately recognized brand and the ability to expand beyond print on paper into the role of marketing consultant – and the composite result is a situation that provides a win/win for both sides of the bargaining table.
By no means is the new owner to anticipate instant and continual success without the blood, sweat and tears every entrepreneur simply must deliver. Converting an independent print shop to a Minuteman Press franchise means newfound freedom for the former owner, but the current owner must now be prepared to invigorate the business with personal energy into a defined marketing strategy that has been honed to produce results for more than 40 years. Also, many times, the new owners do not have prior printing experience, but fortunately, Minuteman Press International training and support is world class.
Ron Rubin, Regional Vice President in New England attests to the saving grace afforded to neophyte print professionals through the very best training and continual support. He says, “Most of the new franchise owners that we help start their careers as franchise owners don’t have prior print experience, but they don’t have to worry because we train and support them so they can make themselves successful.”
Mr. Rubin has a lot of experience when it comes to helping to match the entrepreneur to the proper franchise opportunity and Minuteman Press complaints are not to be found among the many happy current and retired owners in his region. He is well-versed in the process of assisting independent print shop owners sell their businesses as he shares a brief history, “I have 10 stores in my region that are the result of independent owners looking to sell their printing businesses. Joel Steinman is just one example of the fruits of this arrangement as two of the four of his Minuteman Press franchises are ones that were converted from independent to franchise.
The transition of these shops into the more powerful status as franchise location has proven to be lasting, according to Ron as he adds, “I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to help 10 independent printers move on to the next phase and create 10 successful Minuteman Press franchises. They are all doing well, in part, because they bought an existing business with cash flow and a built-in client base.”
“After running their businesses on their own and hoping to move on, people come to me to help them with a printing business for sale and are gratified when things work out well so they can move on.” – Ron Rubin, Minuteman Press International Regional Vice President, New England
Mike Schoen is the benefactor of an independent print shop owner who was ready to sell his business, but needed a hand from a printing industry giant. He now owns Minuteman Press in Green Bay, Wisconsin and reflects on his decision, “I decided I was going to buy a franchise because getting into the printing business, I wanted to make sure I had support and help from a strong source rather than trying it on my own. I sold printing at one time in my life for Xerox, but never dealt with equipment, production or how to run a shop and I knew I needed training and support in those areas. When I was looking at franchises, I discovered a print franchise for sale in Appleton and Doug Harlan (Minuteman Press International Regional Vice President in Chicago) and I looked at that opportunity, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to commute to Appleton because I am up in Green Bay. That is when he had the idea to turn an independent print shop into a Minuteman Press franchise. I liked the idea because I didn’t want to start from scratch. I was 57 at the time and I decided to find a place that was already up and running was because I wanted to start with something strong.”
Doug Harlan is pleased to be part of a mutually beneficial transition that allows the exiting business owner and the new business owner to meet their respective goals. He says, “It’s personally satisfying to have helped numerous independent printing business owners over the years, by assisting them in selling their business and after the sale, converting it to a Minuteman Press franchise location. This can be tremendously beneficial to the outgoing owner, who in most situations, may be reaching or at that retirement age and looking for the most advantageous exit strategy into that next stage of life.”
Mike Schoen is grateful for Doug’s dedicated assistance – which started during his discovery phase and continues to this day. He notes the superiority of the Minuteman Press franchise agreement thanks to the lucrative addition of a royalty cap so absent in other franchise opportunities. He adds, “The print business that I took over had their share of customers and I still have most of them. I picked Minuteman Press over others because of the royalty cap and due to my good working relationship with Doug Harlan. It was a pretty easy decision from there. I did look at other franchises so I could compare but I like the fact that when I get to a certain point of profit, there is a royalty cap and after that, I collect all the money. Doug took me around town to talk to existing owners. We went through Milwaukee, I looked at maybe a half a dozen locations. They were all very happy with MPI and I thought that was a good thing and it helped me make a decision.”
DID YOU KNOW? Independent print shop owners forgo some major advantages afforded to franchise owners. Among them are:
- A proven and continually fine-tuned marketing strategy
- Alliances with big names in the industry
- Mass purchasing power with vendors
- Comprehensive training and continued support
It has proven to provide hungry entrepreneurs with a fantastic opportunity to take command of a business that is already up and running, but formally had no proven system of operations or solid marketing strategy. The result is that it is now under the guidance of the modern printing industry that is Minuteman Press International.
Doug Harlan’s expertise when it comes to helping people enter and exit the stage as business owners is apparent as he adds, “These conversions involve finding and working with prospective entrepreneurs who may not want to start a brand new business, but have the funds for something that is already operating and making money. We reach out to those existing printing companies to find that many usually do not have an exit strategy or idea of what to do with their business that would enable them to move on. Normally, they would have to sell their business to another printer and that printer often offers them a small percentage of what their business is really worth.”
Doug continues, “Minuteman Press International is often able to help these independent owners realize more of a value for their printing business. They are commonly very receptive to accepting our assistance after understanding our process which is personally explained in detail face to face. I also explain their importance in the transition is of a mutual benefit to the incoming buyer and to the seller, as they will frequently take on more of a temporary role as a “customer service representative” by introducing the new owner to the customers with which they’ve built relationships.”
When the time comes to hang a “printing business for sale sign” on their front doors, many independent business owners have had good fortune turning to Minuteman Press International to find the best buyer.
Mike Schoen offers the most important truth of any meaningful growth as a business owner…that of personal accountability, stating, “I am glad I bought a print shop that was able to be converted to a franchise with an up-and-running book of business. Yet, I do the majority of the marketing and I’m the one who is going to grow this business; and this is how it should be.”
To learn more about joining the #1 rated Minuteman Press franchise family, call us at 1-800-645-3006 or simply fill out the contact form on this page.