Franchise Players is Entrepreneur’s Q&A interview column that puts the spotlight on franchisees. If you’re a franchisee with advice and tips to share, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Avionics is the term for the electronic systems used on aircraft, artificial satellites, and spacecraft. It's something Andrew Mason knows a thing or two after 20 years in the field for the U.S. Navy. After retiring from the service with the rating Avionics Technician First Class (AT1), Mason wanted to put his zest for technology to work in his own business. So, when he learned of the franchise company SuperGreen Solutions, which creates customized energy-management plans, the fit felt just right. So did the opportunity to work in the area of sustainable, earth-friendly energy -- another passion for Mason, who like so many other ex-military men and women this Veterans Day, is building his own American dream.
Name: Andrew Mason
Franchise owned: SuperGreen Solutions, in Oklahoma City
How long have you owned a franchise?
I opened my SuperGreen Solutions of Oklahoma City in early 2015.
Owning my own business was a lifelong dream of mine. I attended the Franchise Expo South in Miami, Florida, and the International Franchise Expo in New York City to see if franchising was the right fit for me, and it was.
What were you doing before you became a franchise owner?
I was in the Navy for 20 years. I retired as an Avionics First Class (AT1)
Why did you choose this particular franchise?
Green energy is something that has had my attention for a while. It was important that the business I chose be one that not only gave me the best chances for success, but also allowed me to do some real good for the world.
How much would you estimate you spent before you were officially open for business?
I spent $50,000 for the franchise fee, $75,000 for equipment and $35,000 in miscellaneous expenses like phone, internet, insurance, rent and deposits.
Where did you get most of your advice/do most of your research?
I attended the annual Franchise Expo South and International Franchise Expo to see what was available to me in the way of franchise opportunities.
What were the most unexpected challenges of opening your franchise?
There was the challenge of getting the people to know that the business was here.
What advice do you have for individuals who want to own their own franchise?
For someone like me that has not been in a new business field but is looking to start a business, franchising is the only way to go. It offers a lot of guidance and support.
What’s next for you and your business?
I am working toward continuing to build the business to be successful.