franchise/co-op drive-thru advice?


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Nov 8, 2004
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I am new to the board, but have tried to review it before asking this. Does anyone have any experience with Mountain Mudd, Mudhen, etc.? I am trying to decide b/t building on my own or going the route of a franchise/co-op.

Also, I have taken a job @ Starbucks PT to get some operational experience before I open my drive-thru. Should I worry about them coming after me when I open my own stand? I certainly do not plan on using their "recipes".
Hi texespresso:

Welcome to the forums :D It's a good idea to gain as much knowledge where you can before starting in this industry, and if that means going to Starbucks to start then so be it. However, in my humble opinion they will not teach you about the more important aspects of the business, i.e., operations, equipment, and the like. As for Mountain Mudd, I don't know much about them, I've viewed their website and I have to admit, their buildings seem a bit small (sort of like the old photo mats). I'd say research a bit more before making such a decision. There are plenty of choices out here. Lord knows I've seen a number of new comers to this industry in the past 5 years or so. You have to be careful, there are good companies, and there are rip offs. Do your homework well and see what each have to offer. Just my 2 cents :wink:
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CG, if Starbucks won't supply the necessary operational info I need, do you have suggestions as to where I could gain that knowledge? I know people who have just put up a drive thru and gone for it successfully, but I don't feel that is the norm.
Be a liscensee instead of a franchisee

I agree with CG. I have a viewpoint from several sides of this issue. I am a franchisee (3 Subway stores), a former Mountain Mudd owner and now President of a company that makes coffee drive thrus. I have tried to take the best of each and incorporate it into Java Grande, my drive thru company.

Franchisees do save tons of money in brand development and opertional procedures development. What they take in royalty is usually made up in the savings on consumables. We choose the liscense approach which keeps the royalty small while still giving you flexibility on selecting your consuambles.

I owned a Mountain Mudd. That taught me that drive thrus were viable businesses and how not to build a drive thru. I can take you to my former Mountain Mudd building and then take you to one of our new buildings 5 minutes down the road and you will laugh at the Mountain Mudd. Every week I do this for new clients the result is always the same.

I would be happy to discuss it more. Feel free to contact me directly.