Industry News | September 18, 2013

Tropical Smoothie Targets Houston Area For Growth

On the heels of opening its first restaurant in the Houston market, Tropical Smoothie Cafe, known for its healthy food with a tropical twist, announces plans to add 20 franchise locations in the Houston metro area in three years.

The company is seeking local franchise partners to develop new restaurants in the following parts of Houston: Memorial Park/Washington Corridor, Greater Heights/Northside Village, North Houston, Sugarland/Meadows Place, Bellaire, Katy/Cinco Ranch, and Southwest Houston.

This past August, local entrepreneurs Jignesh Patel and Hemal Patel opened the Houston area's first Tropical Smoothie Cafe, located at 5620 W Grand Pkwy South in Richmond. The brother-in-law franchise partners are already making plans to develop additional Tropical Smoothie Café restaurants in Texas in the coming years.

"After deciding to open a franchise concept, we looked at all the top food concepts and ultimately decided on Tropical Smoothie Cafe because of its use of fresh fruits and veggies and all-around better-for-you ingredients," Jignesh Patel says. "Personally, it's very satisfying to know I'm making it easier for my neighbors to eat and live healthier."

With systemwide revenue approximately split between smoothie and food purchases, the two-in-one business model has led to strong sales with average unit volumes in excess of $500,000.

"Buzz is beginning to build about Tropical Smoothie Cafe in Houston," says Tropical Smoothie Cafe CEO Mike Rotondo. "There's a huge demand for healthy food options in Houston—both from active individuals and those aspiring to live healthier—and we're eager to partner with local entrepreneurs who want a fun, rewarding, and financially sound career."

Tropical Smoothie Cafe is seeking partnerships with local franchisees with general business experience who are active in the community. Restaurant and food industry experience, though preferred, is not required to open a Tropical Smoothie Cafe, Rotondo says. That's because Tropical Smoothie Cafe does not use complicated or expensive equipment often found in the fast-casual industry, such as grills, deep fryers, or hoods, offering prospective candidates an easy-to-operate business opportunity.

The development in the Houston area is part of the 346-unit brand's overall growth strategy to open 42 locations throughout the U.S. in 2013.