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Seven Franchises Are Better Than One...

Nathan's Famous, Fantastic Sams Hair Salons, Wireless Zone, Hollywood Tans, Gold's Gym, Hand & Stone Massage Spa and Blue Moon Mexican Cafe Target New York for Franchise Development, Plan to Open Combined 255+ Locations

April 28, 2008 // // NEW YORK – While many franchise systems work solo to develop brands nationwide, seven of the world's top franchise systems have teamed to target the New York market as one. Nathan's Famous, Fantastic Sams Hair Salons, Wireless Zone, Hollywood Tans, Gold's Gym, Hand & Stone Massage Spa and Blue Moon Mexican Cafe have announced plans to open more than 255 local franchises throughout the next five years.

The seven booming brands will host the Franchise Road Show Tour, a free traveling franchise opportunities seminar geared toward not only educating prospective franchisees of business opportunities, but also educating the community on the basics of franchising. The concepts will dispel the myths of the industry and showcase their collective passion for growing the brands in New York on May 13 at 7 p.m. at the Huntington Hilton, 598 Broadhollow Rd (RT 110), Melville, NY. For reservations, visit or call 1-877-826-7123.

Nathan's Famous is no stranger to Long Island, as the all beef hot dog concept was born in Brooklyn in 1916 and grew up on Long Island. With more than 200 restaurant locations spread across New York and the country, Nathan's plans to open 25 new restaurants throughout the five New York City Boroughs during the next 12 months.

"Long Island and the immediate New York City Boroughs have proven to be one of our most successful markets," said Randy Watts, Nathan's Vice President of Franchise Operations. "The fact that we are under-saturated in this market presents a significant opportunity for our company and for future franchisees."

Having recently opened its first location in the New York metro area, Fantastic Sams Hair Salons, the world's largest full service hair care franchise, is primed to continue its push to develop 50 additional locations throughout the market during the next five years.

"The New York metropolitan area, and particularly Long Island, represents a unique opportunity for the growth of our brand," said Jeff Sturgis, Vice President of Franchise Sales and Development for the 1,400-unit chain. "This market is one of the few major markets where we are not currently represented. We are looking for multi-unit franchises and area developers who have the business experience and financial strength to develop three or more salons."

Wireless Zone has identified the Metro New York area as a top market to develop. The 280-unit retail franchise has turned off the "mute button" and is making noise with a revitalized brand in new markets around the country. For nearly 20 years, the "quiet" franchise experienced steady growth, primarily in New England, with virtually no proactive franchise sales or marketing efforts. Now, the nation's largest franchise retailer of Verizon Wireless products and services is shifting to an assertive approach, adding new stores in untapped markets and launching a branding campaign that will ultimately result in a new look and feel for its stores. Wireless Zone plans to open 50-60 local franchise locations in the next 3-5 years.

"The evolution of cell phone technology continues to serve as the driving force for our growth," said Sean Fitzgerald, National Vice-President of Franchise Development for Wireless Zone. "From young students to top level executives, consumers are replacing their phones more frequently and seeking 'Wireless Professionals' to match them with the right cell phone, plan and accessory. We look forward to meeting the consumer demand in the local market."

With more than 50 locations serving the New York marketplace, Hollywood Tans is one of the largest indoor tanning concepts in the United States, and plans to open at least 25 additional salons in New York over the next five years, according to Shawn Caric, Vice-President of Franchise Development.

"We enjoy significant brand equity in New York and consider New York a significant part of our continued national growth strategy," Caric added. "There are no indoor tanning franchises in New York that manufacture their own equipment, and we view this as a huge competitive advantage for our company and our franchisees as we grow this market. Our salons also specialize in stand up tanning technology, which requires less space, provides a better tan, and allows for a quicker tan time for the consumer versus traditional tanning beds."

Gold's Gym, the most recognized name in fitness with nearly 3 million members worldwide, operates 31 gyms in the New York area and plans to "muscle" its way into the local market with an additional 30 locations during the next five years. Currently, Gold's Gym operates more than 630 nation-wide locations.

"Gold's Gym is turning heads in the franchise investment community," said Stephen Dixon, Director of Franchise Development. "Consumer demand for our gyms is exploding. We have become the gym of choice for millions of American's who are becoming aware of the benefits of fitness in their lives and we look forward to bringing the best in fitness facilities to the metro-New York region."

Hand & Stone Massage Spa, the nation's leading upscale massage spa, recently awarded four New York-area spas. With the market size, Hand & Stone Massage Spa Franchise Development Manager Ken Stein believes the New York marketplace, with its affluence and appreciation for affordable luxuries, can hold an additional 60 New York area locations, all to open within the next five years.

"The New York metro area is a natural fit for Hand & Stone Massage Spa and this market will help make a big impact to fuel our expansion," said Debra Cuadra, Regional Developer of Hand & Stone Massage Spa for Long Island and Northern NJ and a former multi-unit McDonald's franchisee, with over 18 years of franchise experience in the marketplace. "With the expectation for employment for massage therapists expected to increase from 18 to 26 percent by 2014, there is tremendous potential for high-end luxury brands."

Blue Moon Mexican Cafe, a full-service neighborhood Mexican restaurant that began franchising its concept in May 2007, plans to continue with its new growth plan by adding 15-20 restaurants in the New York area over the next five years. The "new kid on the block" currently operates seven locations in the market.

"After 20 years of success in the New York metro market, it was clear that teaming up with these established chains at the Road Show was the best place to initiate our growth through franchising," said Howie Felixbrod, Founder and CEO Blue Moon Mexican Cafe. "Considerable sections of the region, particularly Long Island, fit our ideal demographic profile and yet we feel these areas are underserved within our distinct segment of the market."

Popular Small Business Capital, a division of Banco Popular North America, is one of America's leading providers of US Small Business Administration (SBA) Guaranteed Loans and proudly holds National Preferred SBA Lender status. Popular Small Business Capital has a rich history of working with small businesses and our SBA Lending Program reflects our commitment to entrepreneurs.

"A national franchise lender, Popular Small Business Capital is excited to be a part of the road show," said Vice President Niraj Mehta. "Many new franchisees will need financing in order to make their entrepreneurial dreams a reality. Just as franchisors have a developed uniform business model, PSBC has developed a uniform loan product to ensure that financing will be a smooth and easy process."


Nathan's products are distributed in 50 states, the District of Columbia and 14 foreign countries through its restaurant system, Branded Products Program and retail licensing activities. At December 23, 2007, the Nathan's restaurant system consisted of 324 units, consisting of 318 franchised or licensed units and six company-owned restaurants (including one seasonal unit) featuring the Nathan's and Kenny Roger's brands. For additional information about Nathan's or Kenny Rogers Roasters please visit our website at


With nearly 1,400 salons located throughout North America, Fantastic Sams ( is one of the world's largest full service hair care franchises with an excellent reputation for providing quality hair care services for the entire family. Opening their first salon in July 1974, Fantastic Sams began franchising in 1976, marketing their "fixed fee" system and "no appointments" necessary concept to entrepreneurs seeking to own and operate their own successful business.


When Russ Weldon created what he then called "The Car Phone Store" in 1988, he envisioned a retail store solely dedicated to wireless communications products and services. Nearly 20 years later, the renamed and reenergized Wireless Zone franchise is operating 260 locations, mainly in the Northeast. Now, the franchise is launching the concept throughout the South and Midwest, giving entrepreneurs the opportunity to join the nation's largest exclusive carrier and retailer of Verizon Wireless products and services. Wireless Zone is a division of Automotive Technologies, Inc. For more information, visit


Since 1998, Hollywood Tans has offered franchises and currently claims to be one of the nation's largest chains of indoor tanning salons. They offer a carefully designed and well proven concept that offers indoor tanning services, specialty products and Hollywood Tans' proprietary brand of exclusive lotions. Hollywood Tans is the only retailer that also manufactures their own tanning equipment, allowing franchisees to enjoy a direct relationship with their manufacturer, instead of having to use distributors. Hollywood Tans operates more than 320 salons in the United States, with more than 45 units in development. Hollywood Tans has been rewarded with accolades from Entrepreneur Magazine's Franchise 500 and consistently ranks near the Top 100. Hollywood Tans offers a simple business model that is ideal for the first-time entrepreneur or as an addition to an existing business portfolio. For more information, visit


Established in Venice, Calif. in 1965, Gold's Gym is the largest co-ed gym chain in the world with over 620 locations in 42 states and 26 countries. Gold's Gym also operates online at and Gold's Gym offers the latest equipment and services, including group exercise, personal training, cardiovascular equipment, spinning, Pilates and yoga, while maintaining its core weight lifting tradition. With nearly 3 million members worldwide, Gold's Gym continues to change lives by helping people achieve their individual potential.


Hand & Stone Massage Spa is creating a new massage experience by offering an upscale massage experience to the masses. Our membership driven business model offers client massages at affordable pricing at convenient times that match their busy lifestyles. In the last year, Hand & Stone Massage Spa has awarded over 12 Master Franchise opportunities and 33 single-unit opportunities. With aging baby boomers and increased awareness of the benefits of massage, Hand & Stone Massage Spa is leading the way in a booming industry. For more information, visit


Blue Moon Mexican Café is a full-service neighborhood Mexican restaurant. Fresh, homemade and creative Mexican and Southwest fare are served in a fun and inviting atmosphere. Catering to a wide variety of clientele, Blue Moon Mexican Cafe generates revenue from multiple sources, including takeout, delivery, catering, a full-service bar and community-based special events. For more information, visit For franchise inquiries, contact Howard Felixbrod, or call 201-848-4088.



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