TORONTO, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - In less than 3 years Velofix has grown to become the largest fleet of mobile bike shops in North America, with thirty-five franchises in twenty markets across Canada and the United States. Velofix has been named one of "the most impressive mobile franchises" by Entrepreneur Magazine.
This burst in growth is largely due to the fact that many avid cyclists have found a way to turn their passion into a profession. The freedom and reward that comes with owning a Velofix franchise has attracted those with a strong desire to drive change in the cycling industry.
"The whole model absolutely makes sense to me as a cyclist, and a consumer," says Seattle franchise owner Andrew Alexander. "There is clearly a big gap in the market for this, and our offering enhances the cycling experience."
The franchise model also offers a complete turnkey solution. So it is well suited to someone who has always wanted to own a bike shop, but could not afford the massive investment of money and time. Velofix provides the training, as well as the back-end system that handles the bookings, payment processing, CRM and inventory management. They also invest heavily in brand development and social media.
"We are looking for motivated and qualified people who want to be their own boss and make a great living doing something they love," says Velofix CEO and co-founder Chris Guillemet. "Velofix takes away all the stresses in a mechanic's life by offering state of the art systems for booking, billing, routing and inventory management."
Frustrated with the inconvenience and length of time to have their bikes serviced in the traditional bricks and mortar bike shops, the Velofix founders decided it was time to revolutionize the model. Cycling has experienced tremendous growth and the industry is changing dramatically with the massive growth of the on-line retail market. The internet can't actually fix a bike, so the timing for Velofix could not have been better.
The Velofix motto, 'Save Time. Ride More' allows customers to conveniently book one of their fully equipped mobile shops online, which is then driven directly to them – to their home or office. This eliminates the hassle currently involved in getting a bike serviced – be it a road, mountain, commuter, electric or kids bike.
Customers can choose to remain in the 24-foot Mercedes Sprinter van while the mechanic educates them on what they are doing, or, they can go back to work and be notified when the service is complete. The mobile shop is equipped with an espresso machine, flat screen TV and wifi to ensure customer comfort. All mechanics are professionally certified, and Velofix uses only the best parts and accessories in the industry.
Founded with a passion for cycling, Velofix launched in Vancouver in 2012 by Chris Guillemet, Boris Martin and Davide Xausa, who share a common belief that bicycles can help change the world. Last year Velofix was featured on the CBC's Dragons Den, which resulted in significant media coverage, and Jim Treliving as an investor and advisor. In addition, Charles Chang of Lyra Growth Partners (who recently sold Vega/Sequel Naturals) has joined as an investor. Velofix has sold in 20 North American markets including Santa Monica, Pasadena, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Salt Lake City, Denver, Boulder, St. Louis, Cincinnati and Kona in the US. And Velofix has recently welcomed its first female owner/operator as part of the team. For 2016, Velofix will be operating in every major Canadian market, and has plans to expand to a total of 75 franchises across North America.