99 BIG Franchisees: Charles Loflin

Million-dollar man

Highest-grossing stores

Charles Loflin has won Wingstop franchise's awards for highest sales in 2004 and 2005. Last year, he had a million-dollar store. In 2006, he'll have two.

Loflin, of CNL Wings VIII, Inc., now has 15 of the aviation-themed Wingstops--eight in San Antonio, one in Laredo, one in Corpus Christi, one in San Marcos, two in Austin, and two in New Mexico. He plans another six or so in San Antonio, another in Corpus Christi and in Laredo, and another six to eight in Austin.

All this success begs the question of the 37-year-old Texan and former Holiday Inn Select general manager: How in the world do you get the gross up and increase it?

Well, you start with a "great little environment, the best on the planet," and an aviation-themed décor that is family friendly, Loflin says. Building the brand takes time and a lot of hard work. Then, he adds, within a franchise, it's all about the people at the location and how they operate there. "One of my bookkeepers is reporting sales for a new location we just took over at 95 percent up from the week before. How did we do that? We run our stores with passion, cleanliness, good coming out, and commitment to customer and employee satisfaction."

Loflin, who also owns and operates three Pizza Patron stores, also has a method to his madness when it comes to attaining the highest average checks. "A lot of franchisees come in, wanting to know how we average $15 and $16 checks, when they're running $9 checks," says the husband and father of two. "We do the same things I mentioned. Then, when you walk into the store, it's up to us to help you. We promote all our products throughout the day, and we offer a bonus incentive to staff for selling the products. We try to get as much money out of your pocket as we can. But the flip side of that is that we offer the best service, the best the cleanest around."

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