Tag Archives: Unusual Franchises

Metal Supermarkets continues to grow across Canada and U.S.

By Peter Saunders
Established in 1985 in Mississauga, Ont., Metal Supermarkets has grown to become the world’s largest supplier of small quantities of metal, serving everyone from engineers to hobbyists. By filling a niche in the metal industry’s distribution chain, the franchise system has established its brand and continues to grow in Canada, the U.S. and the U.K.

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Featured Franchises

Unusual Franchises: The Garage Door Depot

By Peter Saunders
The installation, maintenance, repair and replacement of garage doors are not typically the domain of franchisees, but The Garage Door Depot has set out to change that. Currently comprising 28 locations across Canada, the chain grew out of its parent company’s need to diversify.

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Freeing your toes with Flip Flop Shops

By Peter Saunders
In today’s specialized retail world, perhaps it was only a matter of time before a franchise system emerged that was entirely dedicated to flip flops, the plastic and rubber sandals that have become wildly popular around the world. “When I first read about Flip Flop Shops in the business section of the newspaper three years ago, my first thought was, ‘Why didn’t I think of that?’” says Doug Kingston.

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Helping smokers quit with I Quit Smoking (IQS)

By Peter Saunders
Toronto-based Joel Friedman has worked for a number of franchise systems over the course of his career, including McDonald’s, Second Cup, Prime Restaurants (the franchisor for East Side Mario’s, Casey’s and Fionn MacCool’s) and the UPS Store Canada—but none has been as unusual, by his own admission, as I Quit Smoking (IQS), for which he is now vice-president (VP) of development in Canada.

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Featured Franchises

Profit Shield: Protecting profits for bars and restaurants

By Peter Saunders
While helping manage the Saint Cinnamon franchise, Mark Halpern became familiar with VisualTouch point-of-sale (POS) systems from Visual Information Products in Woodbridge, Ont., which help quick-service restaurants (QSRs) keep track of customer orders. In 2009, Visual owner Marius Kimel developed an offshoot concept: software to help the hospitality sector minimize loss of high-value alcoholic beverages. Halpern became president of a new franchise, Profit Shield, which uses this software to audit clients’ inventories.

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Running a party planning franchise with Sweet Beginnings

By Diane Peters
Back in 1998, Elana Lancit started planning weddings; now, more than a decade later, she’s running Sweet Beginnings Event Planning, one of the only franchises of its kind in Canada. The company has a tried-and-true system that allows home-based entrepreneurs to organize everything from bar mitzvahs to engagement parties. Now that Lancit has stopped doing events herself to focus on expansion, this 10-franchise system is set to spread across the country.

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