The USA's Leading Battery Retailer Says 46 Percent of New Owners in the Last Year Come from Diverse Backgrounds
According to the International Franchise Association, the minority ownership rate of franchises is 26 percent, compared to a 19 percent minority ownership rate of non-franchise small businesses. Traditional barriers to franchise ownership include difficulty finding financing, lack of education about how to run a franchise business, and lack of connection to the franchise industry.
One brand that is breaking these barriers through its stable and lucrative business model is Batteries Plus, the leading omnichannel retailer of batteries, specialty light bulbs and phone repair service. In fact, the national retailer reports that over the last two years, 40 percent of its owners have come from a diverse background.
Batteries Plus, founded in 1988 and headquartered in Hartland, WI, is a leading omnichannel retailer of batteries, specialty light bulbs and phone repair services for the direct-to-consumer and commercial channels. The retailer also offers key programming, replacement and cutting services. Through a nationwide network of stores, the company offers a differentiated value proposition of unrivaled product selection, in-stock availability and customer service. Batteries Plus is owned by Freeman Spogli, a private equity firm based in Los Angeles and New York City.
With its turn-key business model that gets minority candidate's investment on the right track from the start, Batteries Plus is invested in helping each of its franchisees grow thriving and successful businesses. Last year alone, 46 percent of signed franchise deals were executed with owners from diverse backgrounds.
One success story is that of the Lewis family, the African-American owners of Batteries Plus in Long Island, New York. It was six years ago, while on a family road trip to Virginia, that the Lewis Family discovered Batteries Plus and were blown away by the customer service and the concept. Fast forward to today and the Lewis family gladly shares their remarkable story of perseverance which led Audrey Lewis to fulfill her late husband's entrepreneurial dreams – one that will live on through their children. Audrey and Victor Lewis Sr. spent 28 amazing years together before Victor Sr. lost his ongoing battle with cancer in 2021. Victor Sr. had always dreamt of becoming an entrepreneur and leaving behind a successful legacy for his family. Today, Audrey and her children have dedicated their lives to turning Victor Sr.'s dream into a reality and carrying through a legacy of greatness.
Success has been swift for the Lewis family as their store is outpacing average first-year commercial sales projections by +65.9%. The family's sharp level of focus has led to continuous monthly growth, with a solid pipeline of business, and they are now on pace to double, potentially even triple, their current monthly commercial revenue by the end of the year.
"At Batteries Plus we have been focused on one task – how to create and maintain a business model that provides an opportunity for anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit to develop a successful business," said Scott Williams, CEO of Batteries Plus. "We are deeply passionate about our franchise owners and are very proud of our ability to attract and retain the industry's best owners – individuals who represent the diverse communities we serve."
Batteries Plus' corporate office has also spent the last year adopting diversity training, and the company is working to establish diverse business resource groups within the culture of the brand.
Batteries Plus has been on a steady path of growth which can be attributed to the multi-billion-dollar markets that the franchise model is based on. (Batteries, $110B; Bulbs, $118.3B, Device Repair, $4B, Key Fobs, $4.82B, Smart Home Technology $28.86M). Multi-unit owners can especially benefit from this, allowing them to open locations quickly and make business even more efficient. As well as the brand's stable, lucrative business model being a determinant of the continued interest from prospective franchisees who want to make these resources more available in their communities.
With over 800 store locations in operation and development nationwide, Batteries Plus franchise owners are passionate about providing essential products and services for their local communities. Batteries Plus has also carved out a unique niche in the industry with its 'plus' services – including cell phone repair and key fob replacement – capitalizing on both its knowledge and service offerings. Positioned for the battery-powered future, Batteries Plus supplies fundamental products that power people's lives – boats, automobiles, golf carts, motorcycles, mobility scooters, thermometers, etc.
Batteries Plus is a leading force in the many industries it serves. It provides its customers with multiple lines of service, such as battery store franchise, cell phone repair franchise, and lightning franchise, keeping all of their devices running smoothly with components and repairs that are hard to find elsewhere.
A Battery Store Franchise: Batteries Plus customers will find batteries to power all of their needs, including laptops, video games, key fobs, a wide range of vehicles, and much more. Commercial customers can access all of the batteries they need to stay powered up and running smoothly. Plus, in addition to a wide selection of batteries, retail and B2B customers alike will find the appropriate chargers for everything from a boat battery to a laptop or phone.
Cell Phone Repair Franchise: Many cell phone repair businesses are limited in what they can do, and generally stick to broken screens. Batteries Plus franchises can repair cameras and buttons, replace batteries, and much more. People need their phones to stay connected – our speedy services are crucial for all of our customers.
A Lighting Franchise: Homes, workplaces, and vehicles alike all require specialty bulbs. Batteries Plus offers a notably wide selection, and the expertise to keep customers for life.
“We sell specialty products that can’t be found almost anywhere else – not even on Amazon. In fact, 70% of the products Batteries Plus stores carry can’t be sold on Amazon due to EPA regulations.” - Joe Malmuth, Chief Franchising Officer, Battery Plus
Record Breaking Commercial Success
Much like the year before, Batteries Plus achieved many groundbreaking milestones in 2022. One of its proudest accomplishments was, once again, achieving double-digit commercial sales growth to help franchisees capitalize on one of several growing revenue streams. Between its expanding pool of commercial customers, all-inclusive support and recognition from the businesses it serves, its commercial sales are expected to break even more records in 2023. With a seasoned leadership team and all-inclusive support system to help in areas like operations, marketing and more, as well as additional revenue streams through multi-unit ownership, commercial accounts and various product and service categories, there are endless opportunities to capitalize off the $652 billion lighting and battery industries.
Diverse Commercial Customer Base
Its commercial customers rely on Batteries Plus to help their businesses run smoothly – from powering everything from heavy machinery to exit and emergency fixtures to lighting solutions, device repair services and more. Its customer pool spans many industries; schools, healthcare, hospitality, automotive, property management, office & administrative, religious organizations, manufacturing, wholesalers, contractors, fire & security, municipalities and more. Its wide array of products and services has also helped many businesses achieve their own milestones, including switching to LED, other eco-friendly alternatives and repairing emergency systems.
Unwavering Franchisee Support
By investing in an essential business like Batteries Plus, franchisees capitalize off the extra revenue stream of commercial sales. Last year, Batteries Plus launched its “Commercial First” program, where new owners can begin making commercial sales once they’ve secured their lease – before their store even opens! Batteries Plus sets all franchisees up with experienced commercial coaches to walk them through the sales process through in-person visits, phone calls and emails. Each franchisee is provided with a customized plan, contact list of prospective customers, a timeline of when to contact them and specific market data. After their first year in business, many franchisees begin leading their commercial sales departments themselves, and they have the support of a commercial sales coach for the life of their business. Of course, those who prefer to focus on other areas of their business can still capitalize off commercial sales, and Batteries Plus will hire, manage and retain a commercial sales representative for them.
Customer experience has been at the forefront of the business world for some time now, and as competition rises, it will only continue. Ultimately, it’s what can set an “average” business apart from an exceptional one. As inflation increases, it will also help brands maintain a competitive edge. A recent report states that 30% of customers are willing to pay for more excellent service. This, combined with the ongoing labor shortage, is driving a movement toward small box stores. Bigger retailers are understaffed and therefore, lacking the personalized service to help customers solve their problems. Meanwhile, Batteries Plus only requires 4-5 full-time employees to operate, and our comprehensive training ensures all employees are problem-solving experts.
Sustainability - A Core Value
Each year, the number of eco-friendly consumers is increasing. Batteries Plus has participated in several green initiatives over the years, including recycling over 50 million batteries. The nature of Batteries Plus is sustainable in itself, driving people away from the use of fossil fuels through portable power alternatives. By offering products like batteries for solar panels and electric car charging stations for businesses, it provides better-quality, long-lasting solutions.
Batteries Plus was ranked on Franchise Times Top 400 list, coming in at #130 and for the 30th year in a row, the brand ranked on Entrepreneur Magazine's Franchise 500 list, climbing 53 spots over last year's rank.
To learn more about Batteries Plus, visit: batteriesplusfranchise.com