An Evening With Thunder Beach

29 Jul

Company LogoThe possibility of becoming a Thunder Beach franchisee has consumed your every waking thought since you first stumbled across their website on a dreary, Monday morning. Caught up reminiscing about your youth and the fun you had, fate came knocking at your door in the form of a sand sports franchise opportunity. Now, it is all you can think about. Your mind is full of questions. At night, you dream of owning a franchise and the laughing, enthusiastic players who will gather at your complex. Your wife is a savvy businesswoman who is willing to explore possibilities, but not without examining every detail. Despite reading the Thunder Beach website over many times, you know that there is more to learn.

It is Tuesday evening, the night of a Thunder Beach webinar, and you and your wife are finishing dinner and preparing questions ahead of time. You received an email last week after filling out an information request form on the company website that contained a link that you need to go to 15 minutes prior to the webinar’s start, which is 7:30 PM Central time. Glancing at the clock, you see that it is already 6:45 PM, and so the two of you get down to business. A list of essential questions is finalized. How much will it cost? How long does it take to build out a complex? How do you find a location, who leases the property, and how much money can you make? You head towards the computer and get ready to click the link at the appropriate time. The webinar begins with Tim McCormack, the CEO of Thunder Beach, giving an opening speech;

“Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to our Thunder Beach webinar! Tonight’s presentation is to address how you can achieve your personal goals by becoming a Thunder Beach franchisee. Anyone with the proper dedication and enthusiasm has the possibility of becoming a successful Thunder Beach franchisee. I’d like to now turn the presentation over to our Marketing Director and Trainer who will navigate you through the steps to becoming a franchisee and answer any questions you may have.”

You look at each other and nod in a familiar and understood way; so far so good. The trainer begins with Thunder Beach’s history and follows that with some general information about becoming a franchisee. At about 8 o’clock, she invites those listening to submit their questions, so you send her your list, which she begins to answer in no time at all.

“Those are some really great questions! Your start-up costs can be anywhere from $70,000 to $175,000 depending upon the number of courts at your complex. It takes, on average, three to six weeks to build out a complex, and there are two ways to find a location. You can find one yourself, which we evaluate based on a 24 point checklist. If your location meets at least 17 of the 24 points, we will negotiate a contract with that site. The other way is we select a target location for you. These will usually be; bowling centers, family entertainment centers, or sports bars. As long as the location has a liquor license and has land next to it, It is a possible location for a Thunder Beach complex. After a location has been found and approved, Thunder Beach leases the property and then subleases it to you, the franchisee. The most important question that you have as a potential franchisee candidate is, of course, how much money can I make?  Everything depends upon what area of the country your complex is located in, which determines how many weeks you can run, how you run your programs, and how you divide your weeks of operation into seasons. In the Midwest, there are three, ten week seasons, but in Arizona you could possibly run six, eight week seasons.  The amount of money you make also depends on how many hours per night your complex is open and how many days you operate. We strongly suggest that you operate at least six days every week, four hours each night, and, on Saturdays and Sundays, begin special programs like sand soccer or sand Ultimate Frisbee at 9 AM. The average registration cost per team also depends on your area of the country. We normally estimate $200 for a volleyball team and $300 for a sand soccer team.”

The trainer then answers a few other questions from other webinar attendees and then the webinar comes to a close. She ends by inviting interested candidates to sit down and assess their financial situation. If they are able and ready to make an investment, they should begin to find potential locations in their area. As you and your wife get ready for bed, you talk about your reactions to the webinar and your financial situation. You are both tired and agree that you will have a more in-depth discussion the next day. For now, your mind is temporarily at ease and your anxious thoughts subside as you drift off into a very deep and peaceful sleep.

To be continued…

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