education franchise

11 03, 2019

Huntington Learning Center Announces Significant Expansion of Franchising Opportunities in the New York Metro Area

2019-03-12T19:45:17-04:00March 11th, 2019|Tags: , , , |

Strategic Plan Marks Largest Expansionary Period in 42-Year-Old Company’s History

ORADELL, N.J. — Huntington Learning Center, the leading tutoring and test prep provider with more than 300 locations across the country, announced today that it will begin rapid franchise growth in the New York Metropolitan area – the same region where the company first opened its doors in 1977. This period of significant expansion will present over 40 new franchising opportunities in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, in addition to 30-plus re-franchising opportunities for the existing company-owned centers in the area.

“This is a pivotal moment in Huntington’s history,” said Anne Huntington, Vice President of Business Development and Member of the Board of Directors. “We are excited for the opportunity to significantly expand our reach within this market and continue the mission that our co-founders, my parents, began 42 years ago, which is to give every student the best education possible. As the next generation of Huntington leadership, I am proud to carry the legacy they’ve built into the future.”

Huntington Learning Center is the #1 revenue-producing tutoring franchise in the United States, with revenues that are 53% higher on average than its closest competitor. Frequently awarded with accolades for its best-in-class results, Huntington was recognized this year as a Top 500 Franchise and a Top Franchise for Veterans by Entrepreneur, as a Top 50 Franchise by Franchise Business Review’s Franchisee Satisfaction Awards, and as a recipient of America’s Best Customer Service from Newsweek.

“We have worked hard to develop truly turnkey franchising opportunities for aspiring business owners since we first made the decision to franchise in 1985,” said Eileen Huntington, Co-Founder and CEO of Huntington Learning Center. “We’ve continued to iterate and perfect our operations over the years and believe that the time is now right for an expansion of this magnitude.”

Huntington franchisees not only have the opportunity to make an impact in their communities but are provided with comprehensive training and support to launch the business, including step-by-step guidance in terms of operations, marketing, finance management and the knowledge of an experienced and dedicated team. Huntington offers a best-in-class financing option, as well as a reduced franchise fee for active duty and US military veterans.

For information about Huntington Learning Center franchise opportunities, please visit www.HuntingtonFranchise.com or call 1-800-653-8400.

About Huntington Learning Center

Huntington Learning Center is the nation’s leading tutoring and test prep provider. Its certified teachers provide individualized instruction in phonics, reading, writing, study skills, elementary and middle school math, Algebra through Calculus, Chemistry and other sciences. It preps for the SAT and ACT, as well as state and standardized exams. Huntington programs develop the skills, confidence, and motivation to help students succeed and meet the needs of Common Core State Standards. Huntington is accredited by Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Founded in 1977, Huntington’s mission is to give every student the best education possible. Learn how Huntington can help at www.HuntingtonHelps.com and for franchising opportunities www.HuntingtonFranchise.com.

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9 01, 2019

Backed by an Investment from Level 5 Capital Partners, Big Blue Swim School Prepares to Grow Through Franchising to 150 Units by 2020

2019-01-09T06:58:36-04:00January 9th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Big Blue Swim School’s consumer proposition, proprietary technology and real estate opportunity primes the brand to become the national swim school leader

CHICAGO — Not many franchisors can give credit to the start of their business to losing to Michael Phelps. A competitive swimmer at the University of Michigan, ranked fifth in the world in backstroke and fourth in the U.S., Chris DeJong trained under the same coach as Phelps. For the 2008 Olympics, DeJong finished behind Phelps and missed qualifying by just four-tenths of a second.

“To be perfectly honest, I’m pretty sure if I had made the team, I would have not left the sport with the hunger and desire necessary to start a business. I’m almost certain that personal disappointment fueled the next step in my career,” said DeJong, Big Blue Swim School President and CMO. “I was able to experience swimming at every level from age group swimming to international competitions. I left the sport somewhat disappointed with my competitive swimming career and had a unique perspective on everything that was wrong with swimming, especially at the entry point.”

DeJong soon moved to Chicago and partnered with John Lonergan, a Big Ten all-academic swimmer at the University of Iowa, to coach a local swim team in Evanston, teach lessons and run the aquatics program at North Shore Country Club in Glenview. The duo developed great contacts during this time, including Chicago Cubs co-owner Todd Ricketts (now a member of the Big Blue Swim School board) and, through their combined swimming and teaching experience, created a curriculum focused on achieving fast results. DeJong and Lonergan opened their first standalone swim school concept in Wilmette in 2009, which grew from 600 to 2,200 families essentially overnight. They opened locations in Buffalo Grove (2015), Niles (2016), Hoffman Estates (2017), and will open a fifth location in Chicago’s North Center neighborhood in March 2019.

“From a consumer standpoint, Big Blue Swim School‘s four points of execution — explain, demonstrate, mimic, correct — allow our child engagement specialists to deliver an experience that actually helps kids learn how to swim,” said DeJong. “Our proprietary distance-based methodology ensures that we are measuring our students’ progress in the ways that actually matter and more quickly achieve better results. Parents are willing to invest in this because it’s a vital life skill, and they are able to rapidly see not only that their investment has paid off, but more importantly, that their children know how to keep themselves safe in and around water.”

Level 5 Capital Partners Sees Big Blue as the Next Big Brand

In 2017, Level 5 Capital Partners, an investment company that grew from one Core Power Yoga studio to become the third largest national yoga studio operator in less than a decade, acquired a majority stake in Big Blue Swim School, and plans to grow the brand through franchising. 

“The consumer proposition, lifetime value of each member and real estate opportunity were what drew us to Big Blue Swim School,” said Chris Kenny, Big Blue Swim School CEO and Managing Partner of Level 5 Capital Partners, adding that the $20 billion swimming lessons market*, the brand’s results-oriented curriculum and the real estate in high-traffic areas made available by Amazon and other online businesses were contributing factors. 

Big Blue Swim School’s real estate footprint is generally between 10,000 to 12,000 square feet, with two 91-degree pools, which allows owners to map out class times by age group and make it easy for parents of multiple children to attend classes at the same time. Because teaching positions are filled by full-time child engagement specialists that receive benefits, Big Blue Swim School has less staff turnover, which saves the franchisee time and money and makes parents and children feel more comfortable.

Competitors in the swim school space typically connect new franchise owners to local real estate brokers who source Class C or Class D locations in warehouse areas, while Big Blue Swim School has a team of eight dealmakers canvassing the country to identify trade areas that fit the brand’s member profile.

“Competitors in the space are primarily focused on getting a good deal on rent, and are finding spaces in warehouse districts that are outside of the daily commute for parents. We are taking the opposite approach by using data on our current customers from Lesson Buddy, demographics, psychographics, traffic patterns and more, to narrow down the options to the top three sites to present to franchise owners,” said Kenny. “We are literally knocking on doors of properties that fit our profile, even if there’s a current tenant, to make sure we have the very best location. As an experience-based business that drives a lot of traffic to shopping centers, Big Blue Swim School is very attractive to landlords. The right real estate is pivotal to our success from a consumer standpoint, and our turnkey, hands-on approach to sourcing real estate and managing the process from lease negotiation through the construction makes it very easy for franchisees to open locations.”

The investment range for a Big Blue Swim School is $1,767,500 to $3,646,000. The brand is looking for franchise owners to develop in Florida, Texas, Southern California, Denver, Charlotte, Northern New Jersey, Georgia and Washington, D.C., the brand is set to add 50 locations in 2019 on the way to meeting its vision of 150 units by 2020.

Big Blue Swim School will support new franchise owners in a number of other ways, like lead generation through a corporate call center, and marketing through the required franchisee marketing fund, to help franchisees save money on labor and ensure that they are able to focus on running their day-to-day operations. 

“Swim schools stack up financially against other top tier franchises but offer a much more rewarding opportunity, and have a longer lifetime customer value,” said Scott Thompson, Chief Development Officer at Big Blue and Level 5 Capital Partners. “We have a strong Item 19, but beyond that, we are attracting people who want to make a difference in their communities and be a part of life’s big moments for families. When you’re part of the community, helping children learn to swim and giving parents peace of mind, it gives you a real sense of pride. You’re not just investing in a business, you’re investing in a lifestyle and a community, and franchising gives us the opportunity to do that on a larger scale.”

A key brand differentiator that will help the team achieve the expected growth is the brand’s proprietary software developed by Chief Technology Officer Casey Morford. Lesson Buddy leverages membership, sales data and operational insights to make business recommendations, including when and where to have class times to maximize return, as well as monitoring the chemical makeup of the pool itself. 

“Lesson Buddy is a tool that systematizes the operations for our franchise owners and gives the franchisor access to data across the entire system,” said Kenny. “If a location has an issue with its pool, the equipment functions with smart technology that’s connected to our software, so we are able to deploy facilities managers to the site to take care of any issues. Plus, the parents love being able to easily schedule lessons and will soon view their children’s progress on the app, which also relieves the franchisee of having to hire an employee to manage class scheduling for members.”

With a best-in-class product, strong brand leadership, a growth model and proprietary technology, the brand is set to add 50 locations in 2019 on the way to meeting its vision of 150 units by 2020.

“We are not treating this business like a normal franchise brand,” said Kenny. “With our network of interested multi-unit franchisees, the consumer value proposition and the business opportunity, we anticipate seeing immediate and long-term growth for Big Blue Swim School.” 

ABOUT BIG BLUE SWIM SCHOOL

Big Blue Swim School was founded in 2009 by competitive swimmers Chris DeJong and John Lonergan. The first location opened in Wilmette, followed by Niles, Buffalo Grove and Hoffman Estates. In 2017, Level 5 Capital Partners acquired a majority stake in the brand, and is rolling out an aggressive strategy to grow through franchising to 150 locations by 2020. Big Blue Swim School’s real estate footprint, proprietary technology Lesson Buddy, coupled with its practice of employing full-time child engagement specialists that teach based on a proprietary distance-based swimming methodology sets Big Blue up for long-term success. 

17 12, 2018

Huntington Learning Center Adds Franchising Leader Anderson Chand as Senior Vice President of Franchise Development

2018-12-17T16:26:38-04:00December 17th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Company Creates New Leadership Position to Reach Their Goal of Doubling Centers

ORADELL, N.J. — Huntington Learning Center, the nation’s leading K-12 tutoring and test prep provider with more than 300 locations nationwide, announced today that Anderson Chand has been named senior vice president of franchise development. Chand has spent the past 20 years in both franchisor and franchisee roles and will use his wealth of expertise to help the company to double the number of centers over the next few years.

“I was immediately attracted to Huntington Learning Center because of their mission to provide every student the best education possible,” said Anderson Chand. “As the spouse of a special education teacher and father of a special needs child, I have always believed education is one of the greatest assets to a community. I look forward to expanding our services to more areas and helping even more children succeed.”

Most recently, he was the chief operating officer for Popbar, a frozen dessert franchisor that has locations in the U.S., Canada, Panama, Portugal, Singapore and Russia. He has also been responsible for nearly 1,200 franchise units as senior director of operations for Edible Arrangements International for the U.S. and Canada. Chand started his career on the franchisee side with food and beverage providers in airports including Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut.

“Anderson’s illustrious career will be a tremendous asset to our team,” said Eileen Huntington, CEO and co-founder of Huntington Learning Center. “He has been deeply ingrained in many facets of the franchising industry and we are excited to learn from him and grow our presence across the country.”

Founded in 1977, Huntington Learning Center began franchising in 1985 and today has 300 locations nationwide. Huntington Learning Center offers competitive initial franchise fees and total upfront investing, as well as franchise financing options, flexibility through part-time startup and comprehensive training and support for franchisors.

About Huntington Learning Center

Huntington Learning Center is the nation’s leading tutoring and test prep provider. Its certified teachers provide individualized instruction in phonics, reading, writing, study skills, elementary and middle school math, Algebra through Calculus, Chemistry and other sciences. It preps for the SAT and ACT, as well as state and standardized exams. Huntington programs develop the skills, confidence and motivation to help students succeed and meet the needs of Common Core State Standards. Huntington is accredited by Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Founded in 1977, Huntington’s mission is to give every student the best education possible.