The Spice & Tea Exchange Expands as Customer Demand for Experiential Retail, Millennial's Focus on Wellness Grows
Gourmet, Experience-Based Specialty Retailer Starts 2019 Strong, Anticipates More National Growth
August 13, 2019 // Franchising.com // ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. - The Spice & Tea Exchange is on a roll - it spent 2018 perfecting its customer offerings through the addition of a tea bar, partnering with a Chopped Junior champion, expanding its footprint across the country and fulfilling customer needs where other tea shops had failed. Each decision proved to add value, as The Spice & Tea Exchange reported $19 million in system-wide sales in 2018 - a 15 percent increase year-over-year - and sales growth continues as they head into the third quarter 22 percent ahead of 2018.
The Spice & Tea Exchange spent 2018 and early 2019 picking up where other closed tea retailers left off, by opening its stores in communities where former competitors had shuttered. The franchise provides customers what the tea shops couldn't - it pulls guests into a captivating shopping experience that is locally owned and operated. When guests enter The Spice & Tea Exchange, they are encouraged to explore, sip, sample, and receive helpful cooking advice from an enthusiastic team of staff members. Their recent move into shopping malls was justified during the holiday season when the brand saw record sales numbers.
The gourmet retailer has every reason to believe 2019 will be equally momentous. Following its recognition in Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 (No. 392) and Top 200 Food & Restaurant Franchises (No. 8 in Retail Foods), The Spice & Tea Exchange has already opened new locations from Sioux Falls, SD to Mashpee, Mass., with several stores in between. Summer and fall will see even more communities welcome new The Spice & Tea Exchange locations; entrepreneurs will open stores in South Carolina, Michigan, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Alabama and more.
"Nationwide, consumer demand for wellness offerings, caffeinated alternatives to coffee and a memorable, experiential shopping experience are on the rise," said CEO Amy Freeman. "We continue to meet that demand by opening new stores with enthusiastic and passionate entrepreneurs across the country. Our franchise owners truly make the difference."
Martin Amschler, Executive Vice President of Franchise Development & Operations anticipates, "By year's end, we'll have a total of 75 locations, and be well on our way to our goal of 100 open stores in 2020." He notes the brand is specifically looking to grow in California, Arizona and Georgia with franchisees who have a passion for crafting a one-of-a-kind customer experience.
The Spice & Tea Exchange is looking ahead to 2020 with excited anticipation. In an effort to increase exposure to prospective franchisees, the company recently launched a new franchising website. The design is modern, mobile-friendly, and offers increased information to assist with the franchise discovery process.
"We provide an attractive experience for every customer, resulting in happy franchise owners," said Amschler. "Whether it's teenagers falling in love with tea for the first time coming in to visit the tea bar, or seasoned chefs looking for a new spice blend to experiment with, our franchisees love connecting with The Spice & Tea Exchange's diverse customers on a daily basis."
About The Spice & Tea Exchange
The Spice & Tea Exchange® was founded in 2008 with a vision to create a one-of-a-kind retail shopping experience. The company has 68 franchise stores across the United States, providing guests with more than 140 spices, 85 exclusive hand-mixed blends, over 40 exotic teas, naturally-flavored sugars, salts from around the world, gourmet gifts and accessories.
SOURCE The Spice & Tea Exchange