Sip Fresh, an innovative, handcrafted juice and beverage franchise concept, announced its first franchise agreement today, just months after announcing the launch of the brand’s franchising opportunity. Sip Fresh's first franchisee-operated store is slated to open in San Diego County at Westfield UTC this October. The store will be run by LK Group UTC LP, led by experienced entrepreneur and operator Lawrence Kourie who, shortly after announcing his intentions to franchise the brand, signed a multi-unit commitment to develop within the Southern California region.
Kourie was instantly intrigued by the eye-catching and delicious Sip Fresh beverage concept, the streamlined infrastructure, the commitment to excellent guest service and the strong management team. “It’s really a brand that is set up for success from day one, which is why my intention was to jump on this opportunity right away,” Kourie explains. After conducting his due diligence, he was convinced of the brand’s strong growth potential and cherished the special opportunity to be the very first franchisee. “It’s incredibly special to be joining the Sip Fresh team as a franchisee in the beginning of their growth, which I have no doubt will be aggressive. I know firsthand the incredible experience of being a first-time franchisee and working closely with the brand’s founders and key development team. I’m ready to embrace this special season. As an experienced franchisee in the Southwest, my plan is to move quickly on additional units throughout the Southwest, eventually becoming a multi-state franchisee.”
Kourie knows the special opportunity that franchisees have when they engage early with a high-potential brand through his experience as the first franchisee of Dave’s Hot Chicken and as the first Wetzel’s Pretzels franchisee in the convenience store space. Kourie also has extensive franchising experience via his company’s holdings in Circle K, ARCO ampm and Extramile, among others.
“We are thrilled to award our first multi-unit franchise to Lawrence. His extensive resume and experience in the franchising industry is invaluable,” says Sharon Arthofer, Founder and CEO of Sip Fresh. “Not only is Lawrence enthusiastic about his business, he also sets a positive example for the franchise system. His commitment to developing a top notch team, providing excellent product quality and delivering an incredible guest experience are in alignment with Sip Fresh values.”
Frank Gonzales, Vice President of Franchise Operations looks forward to working with Lawrence Kourie again. “I met Lawrence several years ago and had the pleasure of expanding his franchising portfolio with some well-known brands,” says Gonzales. “Lawrence is passionate about hospitality and serving his community through franchising, which aligns perfectly with our culture at Sip Fresh. We are eager to witness his success with this remarkable brand.”
The San Diego location will bring Sip Fresh’s unique and eye-catching drinks to Westfield UTC near the University of California San Diego campus. Some of their one-of-a-kind menu offerings include the Mixed Berry Lemonade, Watermelon and Cucumber Mint Lime Sips, the Mango Tango and the Cha Cha.Chamoy. Their line of smoothies are also guest favorites and Kourie cannot get enough of the Strawberry Banana Smoothie.
“Sip Fresh’s goal is to offer an interesting and unique variety of the highest quality, fresh fruit-based juice and beverages that can be enjoyed by the whole family,” explains Arthofer. “We are in discussions with experienced individuals, like Mr. Kourie, who share our passion for building an exciting beverage brand that offers operational simplicity, great labor model and delivers a fun guest experience.”
Sip Fresh is currently exploring opportunities with experienced franchisees and multi-unit operators in the Western and Southwestern United States.