California Concept Opens Franchise in Dulles Airport
City Wok, a Palm Desert, California company, leap frogs to a Dulles Airport unit. In an ideal situation, a franchisor tries to develop its network in wheel and spoke configuration, facilitating efficient support and optimal use of marketing dollars. Looking more closely at it, there is justification.
Stuart Davis, chief executive and founder of the Palm Desert City Wok restaurant, called from one of the nation's busiest airports to say the business he began to offer as a franchise last year has opened a new store in a terminal serving travelers who fly from coast to coast. The franchisee is Hakan Ilhan, an East Coast entrepreneur. - MyDesert.com
The franchisee is not a newbie. He has other franchised successes. He is also not thinly capitalized. He also has protected space. It’s an airport.
If he doesn’t alienate his semi captive patronage one any of the ways one does that with an airport unit, he will probably do well. And if he doesn’t become the rogue franchisee from hell, like the guy to whom McDonalds once sold all of Paris metro without a multiunit development requirement, he may end up expanding his holdings in City Wok, a fresh Asian concept famous in southern California. He has the experience to do it.
Is this a case model for investing in franchises that have no local presence and nothing between you and the franchisor but three thousand miles of space? Certainly not. But it is a great story for the books.
The Internet story garnered comments showing how astute we Americans are about geography. While almost one third of us cannot locate London, England on a map, at least some of us think Dulles Airport is in Texas. Fortunately there will be sufficient Asian traffic through Dulles to provide intelligent and informed clientele for this unit.