By Sullivan Alexander, Contributor, the Price of Business Show. * Sponsored
Sullivan recently interviewed Hans Hess, Founder of ElevationBurger
Hans Hess is the founder of Elevation Burger and CEO of Elevation Franchise Ventures, LLC. He fell in love with the taste of beef at the age of four and 29 years later decided to bring the burger of his dreams to the public. In 2005 he founded Elevation Burger, demonstrating that it’s possible to have a restaurant chain that serves great-tasting, 100% organic burgers made from grass-fed beef that are better for you and better for the planet. As its founder, Hans provides strategic direction for the Elevation Burger brand while maintaining its authenticity as it expands in ten States and five Middle EasternCountries.
Describe the franchise model including (products or services offered, number ofemployees, location, type of customers you work with,etc.).
We offer a simple menu of organic, grass fed beef burgers, fries cooked in olive oil and hand scooped milkshakes. Each restaurant has between 15 and 25 employees. Domestically we have about 35 stores, mostly located in the northeast and Texas. We also have about 10 stores in the middleeast.
Tell us about the franchise branding, both in terms of customers and franchisees.
Our vision is to be much more than just a burger restaurant. It is a vision for an elevated product that is fresh and flavorful, because it is made from grass fed, organic beef. We sustainably prepared beef that is better for our guests and better for the environment. Our goal is for the restaurants to provide an elevated experience in a well-appointed and environmentally friendly setting that delights guests and brings them back to ourrestaurants.
Briefly describe the key franchise systems that have been developed and put in place?
We are in the process of developing a real estate model to make site selection more precise. We have an extensive and rigorous training program designed to produce operational excellence. Our coaching program is becoming more robust everymonth.
What do you see as important considerations in selecting a franchisee and what is the initial investment and operating cost profile of a typical franchisee location (estimate isacceptable).
When we evaluate franchisees we are looking for a few important criteria and characteristics. Firstly, we want a franchisee that understands and shares our vision for the business, as not just another better burger concept but one that is truly a BETTER burger because of the ingredients we use. Organic and green are not just gimmicks of the brand, but really a deep seeded passion to do the right thing and provide our consumers with a more healthful burger product and our franchisees need to believe in that same vision. We are also looking for franchisees who have been, or currently are multi-unit franchisees of other food brands, particularly quick serve brands. Absent, experience in the multi-unit franchising world, we are also interested in single unit or small development area franchisees who are interested in being owner/operators who have a passion for working in their units on a regular basis. We have a strong training program and are well equipped to train single unit or small unit count franchisees who do not have experience in the restaurant or franchisingworld.
Our initial investment, per our FDD, for a typical franchise location is $383,500 to$771,500
As the franchise expands what do you see as hot buttonissues?
We believe that health and wellness will become more and more of an issue for the consumer overtime.
When you look at other franchise options available, describe why this is the next big
thing both from a customer and franchisee’s point ofview!
For a franchisee who wants to get into the burger space, we actually have an answer to the question: “what makes your burger better?”. By using grass-fed organic beef we differentiate ourselves from the market. The answer is really the same for the guest. We appeal to discerning parents and singles who want a product that is healthier than what is offered in themarketplace.
Visit Elevation Burger online at www.elevationburger.com,
Facebook at www.facebook.com/ElevationBurger,or
Sullivan Alexander is a contributor on the Price of Business Talk 1110 AM KTEK (on Bloomberg’s home in Houston), whom you can learn more about at www.contureadvisors.com.
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