April 06, 2010 // Franchising.com // DESTIN, FLA. – Tropical Smoothie Café, a tropical-themed smoothie and sandwich chain, today announced it has named Bill and Julie Munson, owners of Tropical Smoothie Café in Maumee, Ohio, as the recipients of its 2009 National Franchisee of the Year Award.
The award recognizes superior performance in sales results, which the Munsons demonstrated in 2009. They experienced a 26.7 percent sales increase over 2008, in addition to generating $100,000 through catering business last year.
"Bill and Julie are extremely hardworking, committed individuals who exemplify the Tropical Smoothie Café brand to the utmost," said Jim Valentino, president and chief operating officer. "They set high standards for themselves and always achieve their goals, and even go beyond them."
They have owned their local Tropical Smoothie Café for nearly three years, and their store in Maumee truly is a family-run business. Their son, Eric, is the store manager, and another son, Shaun, also works at the store. Julie's parents handle deliveries of catering orders.
Bill and Julie Munson also look upon their employees as part of the family, regularly rewarding them with free meals and movie tickets for outstanding performance.
"Our crew members are a key part of our success," said Julie Munson. "We try to keep them happy and motivated because we know they will give our customers the unparalleled hospitality that is a key attribute of our brand."
The Munsons also believe in helping community groups with fundraisers. They provide real fruit smoothies to local schools to sell at their events and work with other community groups to raise funds.
In 2009, the Munsons participated in National Flip Flop Day, Tropical Smoothie Café's nationwide fundraiser to benefit children with life-threatening illnesses. They raised nearly $5,000 through customer donations and local company sponsorships to pay for trips to Camp Sunshine, where families spend time relaxing and receiving medical and emotional support. Julie volunteered to be a counselor at Camp Sunshine during Tropical Smoothie Week.
"We are deeply honored and humbled to be named Franchisee of the Year," Julie Munson said. "By following the proven Tropical Smoothie Café system and executing the marketing and operational programs that Tropical Smoothie Café corporate provides, we have achieved the success that all franchisees can strive for in exceeding customers' expectations in the years to come."
Established in Destin, Fla., in 1997, Tropical Smoothie Café has taken the smoothie concept to the next level by offering diners a healthy alternative to typical fast food. The concept, which introduced food in 1999, provides consumers with a variety of high-quality real-fruit smoothies, specialty wraps, grilled flatbread and gourmet sandwiches and salads. The company also caters. Tropical Smoothie Café includes menu options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ranked 127 out of 500 and rated one of the fastest growing franchises by Entrepreneur Magazine, the concept currently has more than 285 locations in 34 states. Plans call for 300 locations by the end of 2011.