Friday, October 23, 2015

Franchisor Spotlight: Pet Supplies Plus

FranchiseWorks presents Pet Supplies Plus, the next franchisor to be featured on our Franchisor Spotlight Series. As a leading resource for prospective entrepreneurs, FranchiseWorks is dedicated to providing information that any individual can use to find the right franchise or business opportunity for them.
Franchise 500 Ranking – 2013-2015
Franchise Times Top 200 – 2014 and 2015
VetFran Discount of $6000 off franchise fee

At Pet Supplies Plus, we’re crazy for pets, too. With more than 320 franchise and company locations in 26 states, Pet Supplies Plus is America’s favorite neighborhood pet store. Each location offers a wide array of pet food, pet products, grooming services and animal expertise all at a great value, allowing customers to spoil their pets even more. Friendly, knowledgeable staff get to know each pet and their owner by name and provide playful store experiences to remind them just how fun it is to own a pet. Pet Supplies Plus stores are large enough to house an incredible variety of food and equipment, yet small enough to still feel neighborly. 

Interview with David Leonardo, Senior Vice President of Franchising with Pet Supplies Plus.
Check out the interview with David Leonardo as a podcast episode!

How has your company evolved since the first store opened in Redford, MI in 1988?

When we first opened in 1988, we had some pretty revolutionary ideas:
  • Locate our stores in neighborhoods, so they were convenient to get to.
  • Build on a smaller, more efficient footprint (5,500 to 10,500 sq. ft.) to make our stores easier to shop and less expensive to run.
  • Locate our stores around distribution centers so that we could offer customers a wider selection at more attractive prices and quicker inventory turns.
  • Over the years, those ideas have served us well. We can tout our wide array of pet food, supplies and toys, services like grooming, self-service pet washes, and adoptions. But what really sets us apart is the retail experience itself. We're neighborly, we're knowledgeable, and our customers trust our advice.

Neighbor's loved Jack and Harry's novel retailing concept. Within five years of opening their first Pet Supplies Plus pet center in Redford, Michigan, they had 30 locations. Soon, they were joined by a third partner, Harvey Solway, and the business continued to grow. In September 2010 PSP was bought by a private equity firm called Irving Place Capital. Today, there are over 320 Pet Supplies Plus pet centers in 26 states. Our goal is to grow the PSP brand significantly over the next 5-years and beyond.

What are some common misconceptions about being an owner in the pet care industry?

There seems to be three misconceptions:
  1. "Since it’s retail, I’ll need to be in the store all the time.” Not so. Our “investor model” allows franchise owners—particularly the 65% who are multi-unit owners—to supervise remotely while an on-site operations manager runs the business day to day.
  2. “Retail is a grind.”  Many retail concepts have earned that reputation. At Pet Supplies Plus, it’s not a grind; it’s a grand time. We’re Petcentric—we love pets and pet people. Our neighbors come in our stores happy and leave happier. We make the shopping experience FUN: fun for our team members, our neighbors and their pets. (Yes, pets are welcome in our stores.)
  3. “You can’t make any money—not fast food money—in the pet business.” The October 2015 issue of Franchise Times lists its Top 200 Franchise Chains by worldwide sales. Pet Supplies Plus ranks #102 noticeably ahead of many well-known food franchises. And according to the ITEM 19 in our 2015 Franchise Disclosure Document financial performance representation, the average annual gross sales of a Pet Supplies Plus store is $2,548,565*. Compare those numbers to any other franchise to see if you can make money as a Pet Supplies Plus owner.

What options do candidates have when looking into your franchise opportunities?
  • Single unit – franchisees focus on the day to day operations; staffing, marketing, inventory management, customer engagement, etc.  This is more of a hands-on roll.
  • Multi-unit – franchisees focus on working with their store managers and growing their business.  Emphasis on marketing, financial management, real estate and growth. Each store manager handles the day to day operations.

How many franchised units do you have?

148 franchised units and 175 company units.

What are some competitive advantages of your business?
  • Buying power of 320+ stores allows the stores to offer a greater variety of products at lower prices
  • Smaller stores and local ownership allows for a much greater level of customer service and engagement, building relationships with our neighbors and their pets
  • Smaller stores mean lower rent, lower labor costs, lower prices to neighbors, higher profits.
  • Twice the selection of natural, holistic and organic foods.
  • According to the American Pet Products Association report, pet industry spending is at an all-time high with overall spending for 2015 expected to exceed $60 billion.
  • Recession resistant - More families are getting pets and they are spending more on them as pets take an increasingly more prominent role in our lives.
  • Convenience, value and fun.

What are the desired qualities of your ideal candidate?
  • Must align with PSP mission and culture: to be America’s Favorite Neighborhood Pet Store. 
  • Has strong values, is hard working, fair, honest, and caring. 
  • Should have prior retail experience customer service, food service, banking, or other service based industries. 
  • Has an intrinsic, service orientation and a natural desire to provide excellent customer service.
  • Train and lead their employees in providing and meeting exceptional service standards. Is 
  • comfortable marketing their products to customers using a product knowledge expert approach.
  • Multi-Unit franchisees should have strong management background with a history of consistent career growth achieving or exceeding business goals.

What do you hope for the future of Pet Supplies Plus?

Our goal is to grow the PSP brand significantly over the next 5-years and beyond.

What are ways to learn more about Pet Supplies Plus and how to become an owner?

Visit us at, or contact us directly:

Steve Olson
Franchise Development Manager
734.793.6532 |

David Leonardo
Senior Vice President, Franchising
734.793.6608 |

*Item 19 of PSP Franchising, LLC’s 2015 FDD provides that $2,548,565 is the average gross sales achieved by 119 franchised PSP stores during the measurement period beginning 12/29/13 and ending 1/3/15. Your results as a new franchisee may differ. Of the 119 franchised PSP stores, 44 PSP stores, or 37%, exceeded the average annual gross sales.


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