December 17, 2008 // Franchising.com // Sarasota, Fla. —Despite the news of the current economy, signage and graphics franchise company, Signs Now, a Division of Allegra Network LLC, is beating the odds and experiencing positive growth with the help of the MatchMaker™ program. The conversion program, originally developed Signs Now parent company Allegra Network, matches independent sign shop owners with prospective Signs Now franchisees.
"Our MatchMaker™ program has proven itself to be a very good strategic option for independent shop owners looking for a good exit strategy, individuals looking to get into a well-established franchise business, and lenders who are offered limited risks," explained Signs Now Director of Franchise Development Phil LeBlanc. "We have experienced much success with conversions using MatchMaker™ because it truly offers a win-win-win solution for all involved."
Current Signs Now owner and MatchMaker™ participant, Tracy Collins, opened his Signs Now location near Daytona Beach, Fla. in August of this year and is enjoying the positive aspects of owning a Signs Now franchise.
"With such a solid network backing from Signs Now, we are truly on our way to becoming the one-stop shop for signage and graphics in the Daytona area," remarked Collins.
After spending nearly 30 years in energy and real estate development, Collins was looking for a break from the corporate structure.
"I was put together with Signs Now by a FranChoice broker and was intrigued by the company's MatchMaker™ program," explained Collins. "I was provided the opportunity to buy an existing independent business with a solid reputation, and combine it with the high level of support and training offered by Signs Now. It was a win-win scenario for me."
Rick Bisio, a FranChoice consultant and author of The Educated Franchisee, has been working with Signs Now for several years and feels the MatchMaker™ program provides all parties with a formulized approach to success.
"This program makes a tremendous amount of sense," remarked Bisio. "With the level of uncertainty in today's economy, franchising offers a good option to prospective business owners. The Signs Now MatchMaker™ program goes beyond the structural advantage that franchising offers by adding a built in value to both independent owners wanting to sell and future owners looking for existing cash flows."
New Signs now owners Dave and Kim Typanski recently opened their franchise location in Richmond, Va. and have already moved into a new location after a smooth transition into ownership.
"The MatchMaker™ program made our business search and transition a very rewarding experience," remarked Kim Typanski.
The Typanski's were brought to Signs Now by Gus Iurillo, a business ownership coach with The Entrepreneur's Source. As a franchise industry veteran, Iurillo has worked with Signs Now for three years and feels the rare level of support and follow up with Signs Now and the MatchMaker™ program is unparalleled in the industry.
"The new owners are getting into an already set up business combined with the Signs Now support system," explained Iurillo. "This is the best of both worlds and nobody out there offers the equivalent mix."
With over 20,000 independent sign businesses in the United States and Canada, LeBlanc feels that Signs Now provides the expertise, processes and available markets to make great matches for individuals wanting to own their own Signs Now franchise.
"We help new franchisees fast track their business plan by acquiring a solid and profitable local business and then growing that business with the proven branding, marketing and operating systems that Signs Now offers," explained LeBlanc.
As a leader and top innovator in the sign and graphics industry, Signs Now truly stands out in a crowded world. Signs Now has over 225 franchise locations across the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The corporate offices and the Signs Now Training Academy, Sarasota Campus are headquartered in Sarasota, Fla.
Founded in 1983, the Signs Now service base includes solutions and digital imaging for outdoor and indoor signage, exhibit and vehicle graphics, magnetic signs, banners, window graphics, ADA signage, dimensional letters, directional systems and other visual communications tools to businesses worldwide. The company grossed nearly $86 million in sales in 2007.