Dec. 4 2020
Alison Groom signed up to be a franchisee of Frios Gourmet Pops in October 2018 in Keller, Texas. She quickly found the storefront base for her popsicle business and opened her doors in April 2019, then was hired as director of franchising for Frios in November of last year on a commission basis as “a sort of year to prove” herself. A few months ago, the title became official and salaried.
“It’s very exciting to see the growth of our company right now. I just signed a franchisee last night so we’re at 39,” Groom said. “We’ve got a lot of great ones in the pipeline, great potentials, and we’re focusing on Florida and Texas. We have so many in Texas but it’s so big, so there’s so much more opportunity there that has not been tapped yet…Nothing goes better with warm weather and southern people than ice cream on a stick.”
When COVID-19 hit, Frios transformed its franchising system to a mobile franchise and quickly released a new FDD in June along with its tie-dye wrapped vans.
“It’s just a more simplistic idea, and easy for one person to run versus a storefront…we say it’s so easy your kids could do it,” Groom said. “I’m notorious for bringing my kids along with me to pass out pops, and they enjoy the heck out of it. It’s such a simple model, really anyone can do it.”
Groom’s goals include getting the brand to a place where it can have 10-12 vans waiting at corporate to roll out to new franchisees when they sign up.
“I want to be over-prepared for the growth we’re going to see in the next few months, making sure we’re in a position where we’re more than ready for anything that comes our way,” Groom added. “With this new mobile model and franchise idea, it’s not only really good during COVID times but all the time. You look at other mobile businesses that have been around for a while, and they thrived before COVID.”
Though they’re focusing heavily on the southern U.S., Groom said she’s in talks with potential franchisees in Chicago and New York.
“Frios is fun and brings happiness to people. It’s one of those products you can sit, eat a popsicle and talk to people around you. It’s very organic,” Groom said. “I also like bragging about our CEO, Cliff Kennedy, who bought the company around the same time I became a franchisee. I was one of the first franchisees he signed on…I look up to him a lot, and our success is because of his leadership. It makes it easy to want to work for this company and want to grow and sell this brand.”
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