Canadians are more aware of their health and their environment than they’ve ever been. They want healthy meals, and rather than throwing things away, used clothing and good old-fashioned but up-to-the-minute repair are making a significant return. And systems to meet those demands are being launched across the country.
JP Morrissey, Founder and CEO of Eat Clean Healthy Grill & Juice Bar, was a competitive hockey player, but when he left the game in the early 2000s, he started to put on a lot of weight. Determined to lose it, he followed a regime that proposed six days of what he calls “clean” food, and one day of “junk.” As he lost the weight, it got him thinking about eating healthy food all the time, but he says there were no healthy options available. And so began Eat Clean. It’s a full service restaurant, and also has a takeout menu, with items to suit gluten-free diets, vegan diets, those who want to lose weight, and even bodybuilders, he says.
Morrissey began writing his business plan in 2012, and opened his first store in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 2014. By the end of that year, he had been contacted by some fellow Newfoundlanders about opening an Eat Clean restaurant in Fort McMurray, Alberta, which became the system’s first franchise. Today there are five franchises, with the others in St. Albert and Sherwood Park, both suburbs of Edmonton, Alberta, and the fifth in Edmonton. Morrissey says he wants to establish up to 10 stores by the end of 2018, with Central Canada his focus. “We’re looking forward to the Ontario market, because it’s going to be one of our strongest.” Eat Clean is planning on moving its headquarters to Toronto in January 2018.
Before a store opens, a trainer from HQ comes in for 10-14 days, and a corporate chef is also brought in to train those who’ll be doing the cooking at the new location. Morrissey says franchisees don’t need a food service background, “They’ve just got to be coachable. It’s just having business sense and being professional.” Investors interested in Eat Clean are evenly split between men and women, he continues. The cost of a store in a brand new building is $375,000.
As for the benefits of investing with him, Morrissey says Eat Clean provides a great business model, solid support, and is part of a movement to help people to eat healthy food. “It’s a feel-good business. Helping people get healthy gives you a sense of accomplishment; it’s more than just dollars.”
It won’t be long before absolutely everyone in the country has a smartphone. But what happens if your smartphone gets damaged? Many smartphone users rely on their device for just about everything, so a phone that doesn’t work as it should is a major inconvenience.
Of course, a damaged phone can be repaired now, but dropping it off, getting it fixed, and having it returned at the usual places might take weeks. So for people who can’t wait, there’s Mobile Klinik. The professionally-trained technicians at these stores can repair 90 per cent of smartphone problems at the counter, and provide lifetime warrantees on parts and labour.
This new retail outlet is the brainchild of Rob Bruce and Ken Campbell. It began in 2015 with one corporate store in Ottawa, a second in Toronto’s Commerce Court, and a third in Gatineau, Quebec. The first franchise was opened at the Yonge and Dundas intersection in Toronto in 2016. Andy Goodman, Mobile Klinik’s “in-house franchise department” and a 25-year veteran of the franchise industry, says there are 20 stores now, and Mobile Klinik is working toward 60 by the end of 2018.
Expansion is slated for Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, and Alberta, with further growth anticipated in London, Guelph, and St. Catharines, Ontario, and expressions of interest shown in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Mobile Klinik is looking for franchisees who’ll invest in multiple units – from three to 12 – and investors are coming from across the sector, including dealers from other cell phone stores.
The cost of a franchise is between $150,000 and $200,000, with another $30,000 to $60,000 required for inventory because stores need parts for every phone out there. Stores themselves run from about 350 square feet to 600 square feet. “There’s no huge build-out cost,” says Goodman. “We can do it in a small space,” including space in a mall that is unused or oddly shaped, such as the pie-shaped store at Dundas Square.
Goodman says the benefits of investing in the well-capitalized Mobile Klinik include a great business model, high-end locations, and a top-notch management team with an extensive understanding of the Canadian smartphone repair market.
More than 80 per cent of Canadians bought a used item in 2016, bringing the second-hand economy to an estimated $29 billion in Canada, with children’s clothing, baby gear, toys, and accessories ranked third.
That’s where OutGROW OutPLAY, the nation’s leading children’s consignment sale event comes in. Casandra and Richard Robinson, Ottawa parents of two, came up with the unique sale event concept in 2008, as a solution to the high cost of growing children.
“All parents have a lot of kid clutter taking up their space. From newborn to age eight, children often outgrow their items before the ‘new’ even wears off,” says Casandra Robinson.
OutGROW OutPLAY holds exciting three-day pop-up children’s consignment sales seasonally at venue locations with 15,000 to 50,000 square feet. Parents register as a consignor, and create and attach their own unique barcoded tags to the like-new items they’re selling. Items are dropped off before the sale starts, and are inspected by an army of mom volunteers for quality. Parents price their items, earning 65 to 80 per cent, and OutGROW OutPLAY quickly sells those items for them, hassle-free.
“Our average consignor earns $530 each sale. Tens of thousands of loyal moms sell, shop, and save at OutGROW OutPLAY sales each season. They love our eco-friendly concept and that our sales are organized and categorized like big box stores. Shoppers enjoy typical savings of 50 to 90 per cent off retail, saving them hundreds each season,” says Robinson.
OutGROW OutPLAY is expanding coast-to-coast, and all territories are exclusive. Ninety-seven per cent of those who sell, shop, and/or invest with OutGROW OutPLAY are women with diverse backgrounds.
“OutGROW OutPLAY is a recession-proof sustainable business that thrives in tough economic times. Low start-up investment, flexibility, proprietary custom systems, and web platforms with complete and comprehensive training make an OGOP franchise affordable and appealing to parents who want to start a business part-time, but with full-time returns,” says Robinson.
By David Chilton Saggers