Starting a business can be expensive, but UPS has significantly reduced costs for minority entrepreneurs who want to open a UPS store.
The company’s diversity ownership program allows minority and LGBTQ + franchisees to open a corporate store for $ 15,000 – half the standard price of $ 30,000.
“We launched this program in August 2020,” said Michelle Van Slyke, interim corporate president for The UPS Store. “We wanted to spread the word to minorities and the LGBTQ + community, welcome them and let them know that we would appreciate them being part of our network.”
UPS has more than 5,000 stores in the United States and all of them are independently owned and operated.
“It gives individuals the opportunity to open stores in neighborhoods where they live and know people,” Van Slyke said. “Our local store owners are part of the community. “
Philip Gonzes, 43, of Rossmoor and his wife Thea hosted the grand opening of their UPS store at 11873 Valley View St. in Garden Grove on June 24. At 2,000 square feet, it is the largest UPS store in the country. Most corporate stores are 1,200 to 1,500 square feet in size.
“We’re super excited about this,” Gonzales said. “In the last few years there has been a slight increase in shipping and packaging online, so we decided to look at different franchises. This is the best opportunity we have found. The minority franchise program just validated that this was the franchise we wanted to get involved with.
The Garden Grove store features the company’s new “Blue Horizon” layout, with digital screens and menu boards for company promotions.
“It’s a forward thinking design,” said Van Slyke. “It’s more of an open space where customers can see their packed items. It has a different color scheme and there is also a print consultation area for printing and notary services. Some stores even have lockers.
UPS stores also offer shipping, mailbox, fax and shredding services in addition to retail items including greeting cards and phone chargers.
“It’s essential for small businesses to have a mailing address that they can put on a business card,” Van Slyke said. “We also do returns for national retailers. “
Gonzales, who hosted a smooth opening for his store on May 11, previously worked in advertising but is excited to step up to the role of business owner.
“We also serve many other cities including Seal Beach, Los Alamitos, Stanton and Westminster,” he said. “We are already involved in several chambers of commerce.
Van Slyke said there were several other minority-owned UPS stores in the queue.
“It takes a long time from when you apply to become a franchisee until the store opens,” she said. “It’s a way to bring UPS stores to areas where we are not. Much of the business is related to e-commerce and returns. We remained an essential service during the pandemic. “
Franchise Direct has ranked The UPS Store at # 30 on its list of the Top 100 Global Franchises.
The list is largely dominated by the fast food industry, with McDonald’s leading the way, followed by KFC, Burger King, 7-Eleven, Domino’s, Ace Hardware Corp., Century 21, Pap John’s, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, for complete the first 10.
Like other businesses, franchise operations took a long time during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Franchise Direct said about 32,700 franchise businesses closed in the first six months after the COVID-19 outbreak, with 21,834 temporarily closed and 10,875 permanently closed.