Postal Connections Targets Smaller Michigan, Indiana Communities for New Postal and Business Services Stores
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Postal Connections Targets Smaller Michigan, Indiana Communities for New Postal and Business Services Stores

SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Postal Connections of America, a rapidly growing franchise chain of postal, business and communication services stores, is focusing expansion on cities of 75,000 population or less throughout Michigan and Northern Indiana. The newest Postal Connections in this area, located in St. Johns at 800 South US 27, is owned by Mark and Cheri Smith.

"I decided to start my own business here in town after a career at a large company. I wanted to open a business that provides products and services people need, that I can grow over time," said Mr. Smith. He had worked 29 years as an assembler at auto parts maker Federal Mogul until he lost his job in a downsizing. Cheri Smith works for Kraft Foods.

"Postal Connections is a perfect fit because it's an affordable, easy to learn business, and the store is ready to go without spending a lot of time and money waiting for things to happen," Mr. Smith said.

Other Postal Connections packaging and shipping stores in Michigan are located in Ada, at 6749 E. Fulton Street and in Kentwood, at 15127 Kalamazoo Ave. A fourth Postal Connections store is scheduled to open in St. Joseph.

Postal Connections has 102 franchise packaging and shipping stores sold or open in 23 states across the U.S. In the past 18 months the company has opened 14 new franchise stores in communities under 75,000 population, from Lebanon, OR to Lebanon, PA.

"We chose Postal Connections after extensive research and found their affordable initial franchisee fee, low monthly royalties and no national ad fees made a big difference in our financial planning. Postal Connection's management has strong industry experience and a good reputation," Mr. Smith said. "We also liked Postal Connections' partnerships with large companies such as Toshiba that provide equipment at low prices and gave us ownership of two printer/copiers as part of a leasing package. We were able to put those assets on our books the day we opened," Mr. Smith said

Recently Postal Connections of America was purchased and taken private by members of its management: senior executives C. Andy Thompson and Fred Morache. Earlier in their careers Mr. Thompson and Mr. Morache were executives with Mail Boxes Etc. (now The UPS Store) where they were instrumental in growing that franchise chain from a collection of neighborhood stores to a worldwide organization. They joined Postal Connections of America in 2002.

"What makes Postal Connections stores well-suited to mid-sized and smaller cities is its complete package for opening and operating stores," said Matt Davidson, a Postal Connections store owner and Area Franchisee in the Grand Rapids metro area. "Postal Connections stores are turnkey businesses with interiors, inventory, and business systems installed and ready to go. The new franchisee only has to obtain needed permits, paint the walls and put up the signs," added Mr. Davidson. "It also makes a big difference when you have access to the company owners, who from the start help you with financing sources, landlords and high quality vendors in establishing your business," said Mr. Davidson.

Compared to other postal and business services franchises, Postal Connections stores are typically $20,000 to $75,000 less expensive to open, and three to four-and-a-half percentage points lower in monthly royalties and fees than other franchisors. Postal Connections does not take fees from vendors on sales to franchisees or resell vendor products and services.

The Postal Connections business model is designed for owner-operators who want to become a trusted member of their community's commercial and retail services infrastructure. It is a "people business" for franchisees who enjoy finding solutions for others.

Postal Connections stores offer packaging, shipping, mail receiving and forwarding, copies, printing, fax sending and receiving, notary, Internet access, and other products and services. Unlike many similar stores, Postal Connections franchise stores feature shipping alternatives that give customers choices in prices and delivery speed with all major carriers, instead of using only one shipping service.

Recently ranked among the top six franchisors of retail postal, shipping, and business services by ENTREPRENEUR Magazine, Postal Connections of America is based in San Diego, and has been franchising stores since 1996. Postal Connections is located at 1081 Camino del Rio, San Diego, CA.

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