Jeny Buha, Director of Development and Marketing for 32 A Yogurt Bar, recently sat down with Franchise Gator to talk about the frozen yogurt industry.
Give us an overview of the Yogurt Industry
Frozen yogurt, a hybrid between the traditional ice cream dessert and the healthier (and hipper) yogurt based products, is an innovative way for customers to "have their cake, and eat it too." Although the popularity of the frozen yogurt franchise industry suffered a decline in the late 1990's, the category has been making a colossal comeback in the last decade, with a new generation of flavors, toppings, and store settings leading the charge. With this new wave of frozen yogurt franchises blossoming, new franchisees will find that this industry is nowhere near its freezing point.
How has your industry changed in the last 10 years? 20 years?
1980 marked the beginning of the first wave of success in the frozen yogurt franchise industry. However, after 10 years of froyo franchise madness, the most popular frozen yogurt franchises like TCBY began to lose ground to competing ice cream shops and coffee houses.
However, with new frozen yogurt franchises like 32 A Yogurt Bar blending innovative varieties of flavors and toppings, the frozen yogurt industry is now back on track and more popular than ever before. Focusing on providing delicious yet diet-friendly treats to its health-conscious consumers, this new hybrid of frozen yogurt is tangier, tarter and lighter than original frozen yogurt products. Unlike older franchises whose frozen yogurt was intended to mimic ice cream products, these new franchises go beyond the typical ice creams flavors, offering creative inventions like cran-raspberry and green tea yogurts.
What is the biggest concern about your industry that a franchisee candidate should be aware of and investigate?
Over saturation of the market in certain areas. Finding an excellent location is key.
Why do you think your company stands out in the industry?
We are the most hands-on, knowledgeable and flexible franchisor in the self-serve frozen yogurt industry.
What's the strongest skill you require in a candidate?
Sourcing food, equipment, etc. at the lowest price.
Managing daily store-level operations.
Describe the working environment of your franchisees. Is your environment typical of other companies in your industry?
With indoor and outdoor seating and a colorful and friendly store, 32 is a place where people meet and stay for a while. The best days are when the store is full of kids.
How much experience in this industry should a franchisee candidate have should they consider buying a franchise in your industry?
No experience is necessary! We will teach them everything they need to know to run a successful business.