Tony Lamb, the Kentucky-based founder and CEO of the burgeoning shaved-ice franchise Kona Ice, attributes his success to his boldness and reliance on instinct rather than on conventional wisdom. His daring attitude comes through when he talks about his business as if it’s a vintage Camaro, saying things like, “You look at [Kona Ice] and think, this is really nice. But you have to get up to 60 on the interstate occasionally to see if the wheels come off.”
So far, it appears as if the proverbial wheels are not coming off. Since its inception in 2008, Kona Ice has expanded to nearly 600 franchises, and it’s still going strong. Lamb does not expect the business to reach its plateau anytime soon. By his estimates, there will be another 140 opening up in 2015.
Prospective franchisors and other business men and women reading this article are probably wondering, what led Tony Lamb to achieve super stardom in the franchise world? What are the secrets of his success? Well, by taking apart his business model, we have found some key pieces – some are expected while others are quite unconventional – that every business owner should either incorporate or at least take inspiration from in order to find success in their own endeavors.
Firstly, and perhaps most importantly, Kona Ice offers a well-thought-out product. Rather than using crushed ice, Kona Ice uses shaved ice, which holds flavoring syrup much better, contributing towards a better and more consistent taste experience from beginning to end.
Secondly, Kona Ice franchises are relatively inexpensive to establish and the operating costs are fairly low. In order to sell a franchise, you have to appeal to buyers. And there is no better way to attract buyers than to offer a good deal with low costs and low risk.
Finally, Tony Lamb keeps close tabs on franchise operations and how they’re faring in the market. Rather than sitting on autopilot, Tony Lamb actually runs eight Kona Ice trucks himself. He believes it’s important to keep in touch with day-to-day operations and to understand the daily difficulties of running a franchise. It’s this willingness to connect with his franchisees that has made Tony Lamb who he is today.
People like Tony Lamb don’t find success through hard work and sheer luck alone. They do their research and seek guidance in order to make informed decisions that give them the edge over their competitors. If you are thinking of starting a franchise, contact today at (800) 976-4904 for more information.
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