Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine Issue II, 2017 - Page 36

AT H L E T E S I N F R A N C H I S I N G BOTTOM LINE Annual revenue: NA. 2017 goals: Continue to grow our business in a smart fiscal manner, while looking for new opportunities. Growth meter: How do you measure your growth? Year over year, and by our community involvement where we do business. Vision meter: Where do you want to be in 5 years? 10 years? In 5 years, I want to be able to relax and allow my son and his leadership to expand our brands. How is the economy in your regions affecting you, your em- ployees, your customers? All positive at this time. With the new leader- ship in government there is some uncertainty, but I remain positive. What are the best sources for capital expansion? Banking, venture capital, and outside investors. Experience with private equity, local banks, national banks, other institutions? Why/why not? In the restaurant business, and particularly in the airport restaurant business, financing is a challenge. Therefore traditional banking is very difficult to accomplish. We look for creative ways to get things done by partnership investments and a mixture of all of the above. What are you doing to take care of your employees? All sorts of things, such as scholarships, savings, personal assistance, and educational op- portunities. Are you experiencing economic growth in your markets? Yes. How are you handling rising employee costs (payroll, minimum wage, healthcare, etc.)? We have to bite the bullet because we cannot pass these costs on to customers. How do changes in the economy affect the way you do busi- ness? Minimum wage changes always affect business. Also, medical policies affect business. How do you reward/recognize top-performing employees? We reward monetarily, by acknowledgements with plaques, and by growth from within. How do you forecast for your business? Budgets versus actual, pro- jected growth versus last year. What kind of exit strategy do you have in place? Transition to fam- ily is the main objective. Brewing, and Comfy Cow. His brands dominate at Tampa International Air- port, Miami International Airport, and Louisville International Airport. It’s the airport angle that has really differentiated Tinsley in his markets. Just last year, his company was named subtenant in a new 8-year contract to expand restaurant service at Louisville International Airport. HMSHost is the primary holder of the nearly $110 million contract. Together, the two companies operate 11 dining venues at the airport. Business is business, but Tinsley also understands the importance of community involvement. That’s why his organization has been actively in- volved with the chamber of commerce and school district in Winter Haven, Fla., where the company is based. He and his wife Seretha have a long and admirable history of participation in giving back to their communities. At 70, Tinsley recognizes that transi- tion is near. His son George II is actively involved in the organization and looks to be the company’s face of the future. “We intend to continue growing our company and preparing for my son to take over,” says Tinsley. Meanwhile, the company he started in 1984 with a single KFC and two employees (him- self and Seretha) is well positioned to continue soaring in the airport mar- ket—and beyond. SPORTS & BUSINESS What skills/experience from sports have carried over to oper- ating a business? Athletics and competition taught me how to be prepared and execute a plan of action. I learned how to turn a loss into a win and how to deal with tough losses. Which do you find more competitive, sports or business? Busi- ness, because you are a leader, and sometimes you only get one shot at suc- cess. Why did you choose franchising as an investment option? Fran- chising has a developed operations plan of success and multiple resources to assist you when needed. 34 MULTI-UNIT FRANCHISEE I SS UE II , 2 01 7 How did you transition from sports to franchising? Given my career path, it was fairly easy from the preparation standpoint. It does not hurt to work alongside the founder of KFC for 3 years, to learn from the bottom up. Having worked with hundreds of millionaires in the business, the blueprint was there. What was your greatest achievement in sports, and what has been your biggest accomplishment as a franchisee? In sports, my greatest honor was being inducted to five Halls of Fame and winning 3 NCAA Championships. In franchising my biggest accomplishments include being named Franchisee of the Year by KFC and TGI Fridays, and having the top sales volume for TGIF 9 years in a row.