When you think of pursuing a franchise opportunity, finding the right land or building may not be top of mind right away. To us, however, the location of your future business is a critical first step to success. Primrose Schools has a dedicated Real Estate Team who not only helps new Franchise Owners select sites but assists with real estate negotiations, design and development.
We actively seek the best opportunities for your future school. That’s why the Team and I recently attended the International Council of Shopping Centers’ (ICSC) RECon convention, the annual gathering of the nation’s top retail real estate brokers and developers held each May in Las Vegas. Primrose Schools had a booth in the exhibition hall to help raise awareness about our brand, and our schedules were booked with one-on-one meetings with office developers, mall owners and brokers from across the country.
Since many retail deals begin as conversations at RECon, attending this event is a big deal for our Real Estate Team. At the show, our Team meets with brokers and developers to determine what their real estate needs are and if a Primrose school would be the best fit. Staying in regular contact with the broker and developer communities is one of the many ways our Team proactively assists Franchise Owners throughout the process of opening a new Primrose school.
More than one-third of the new schools in our development pipeline are unique conversions – often office or retail spaces — or schools creatively built on smaller lots. Earlier this year, we opened our 300th school in Brookhaven, Ga. The school is located within a mixed-use retail center and built as a two-story development on .4 acres (a traditional Primrose school is built as a single-story on 1.5 to 2 acres). Shortly thereafter, we opened a new school in Dallas’ upscale Preston Hollow neighborhood within a former retail bank branch.
As we expand into newer markets – especially established markets where undeveloped land may be scarce – it will become increasingly important to widen our search criteria for new school sites. Attending real estate events such as ICSC is one way we do that. Our development model is flexible, and retail spaces, whether they be in shopping centers or commercial spaces within office buildings, often make the perfect locations for new schools.
Conventions are not the only way our Real Estate Team helps with the site selection process. Our Site Acquisition Managers, who are strategically located throughout the country, also work with their local contacts on leads for new school locations. We do the due diligence of researching the neighborhood’s demographics, traffic counts and site access to determine if a Primrose school is a good fit. Once our Real Estate Team, with the help of the Franchise Owner, identifies the best site for a new Primrose school we assist in negotiating the property’s lease or purchase.
Primrose differentiates itself from its competitors by giving a Franchise Owner the option to own their property. There is great appeal in knowing that the new school you’ve worked so hard to open is yours, and ownership is an option many of our Franchise Owners pursue.
Once the site for a new school is secured, our Real Estate Team helps with every step of the design and build process. This assistance is provided on top of the pre-opening marketing and training plans provided to every new Franchise Owner.
Primrose Schools partners with Franchise Owners who are passionate about early childhood education. You may not be a commercial real estate expert, but our Team has decades of combined real estate experience, and you can trust that they will help ensure your school is opened in the best location to help it succeed.