Oct. 17, 2022

Rolling Up Franchieses with Brian Beers


I am an entrepreneur, investor, podcast host & father.

I grew my small family franchised auto repair business into an enterprise with ~30 locations.

I'm on a mission to teach other entrepreneurs everything I know about growing a business and creating passive income through investments outside of Wall Street.

https://www.brianbeers.com/

Transcript

Josh Wilson
 All right, so let's just start with this. You've got a podcast show. Give your podcast show a shout out. Tell us about the show. Why do you start it and where people could go to listen to it. 


 Brian
 Yeah, so my last name is Beers. Like the drinks. My podcast is called Business with Beers. We do not drink one. We record, but if someone wants to, they're welcome too. I talk about buying businesses, scaling businesses, kind of. Once you make money, where do you invest in it? I started about over a year ago. I got almost 100 episodes now in the books. And it's a lot of fun. I mean, just like you get to connect with really interesting people and hear their story and provides a really good excuse to lock somebody down for 45 minutes and get to know them. I get the most value out of the conversation, like me and you the guest and the host more than almost anything else. And so that's why I do it. That's why I love it. I like getting on other podcasts to kind of expand my network as well and share the stories. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. For me, I've done a bunch of different interviews, a bunch of different brands over the years. I love interviewing people, but when they're interviewing me, I get so nervous. Do you ever feel that way live when you've got the bike and you're in control of the conversation? To me, it's easier. 


 Brian
 Yeah. I don't know. I could both ways. Sometimes I'm okay with the interview. Sometimes it depends on the depends on who I'm talking to. Do I have to pull information out of them or does it slow? I think that really kind of dictates how it goes. 


 Josh Wilson
 Sure. In starting the podcast show, 100 episodes, and super cool because most people won't get past one. Right. If they do get cracked past one, they stop at three. Right. That's where the 90% fall off. What inspired you to keep going? Because 100 is a big number. What inspired you to do that? 


 Brian
 Yeah, I think you build confidence just like anything you do in life, you start. I was super nervous for the first one and stuttering how's my voice going to sound and saying this and too much. I think people are really self critical and no one really cares about that but you. I think once you can get over that and you just keep going, and then people reach out live. I get people reach out all the time, just like they reach out to you and tell you how much of a change you've had on their life, whether it's an idea or guest or something you inspired them to do. People message me all the time on LinkedIn and Twitter and subscribe to the newsletter. I think one of the challenges podcast, it's like a one way medium. People listen to us, but it's hard for us to get feedback. 


 Brian
 I think when you start to kind of get that feedback and you realize key people like this, people are engaging and just build confident that you're making a difference. It's worth the time that I invest to do it. I have a good team around me too, that produces Panther Episode. They create all the social media content. My primary job, my only job, is to get on and talk for 45 minutes, and then I have a whole team that does everything else. If I had to do it all myself, I couldn't do it. 


 Josh Wilson
 I started that way where everything fell on my plate and people don't realize and I love your thoughts on this, people don't realize the amount of work it takes to put together a podcast show. You're interviewing the person, you're doing the research on them, you're pulling the notes and all that. There's a lot of work to do that, and you've got a team talk to us about now. You're an expert in scale. Talk to us about what your business looks like now. First of all, you look like a really young dude, by the way. It might be the camera or whatever, but you look like a really young dude who has accomplished some amazing things in your life. Kind of give us a snapshot of what you've accomplished today. 


 Brian
 Sure, yeah. I'm almost 35, but I do look young. My wife is not happy about it. Well, I guess maybe it is, but she wants anyway. Heath so we now have 30 automotive repair franchises in the Philadelphia, New Jersey market that we've kind of consolidated. 27 of them. 28 of them have been existing franchises that we kind of rolled under, kind of our umbrella. Two of them we opened from scratch. That is kind of what I'm here to talk about today. That's kind of business we built, legacy business, goes back to the 70s. My dad started with one, built into about six. I took over and I joined in 2010. Peter College took me about six years to learn the business, get comfortable, network, make changes, have progress. It's really in the last year, went from twelve to 30, just through some big acquisitions. Anyhow, it's a great business to be in, Franchising. 


 Brian
 There's a lot of opportunities for growth, which I know we're going to Talk About. But. Anyway, that's the 32nd pitch. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. Super Cool. I'm looking through. How many employees do you guys have now? 


 Brian
 Close to 200. 


 Josh Wilson
 200? 


 Brian
 Awesome. Min. 


 Josh Wilson
 Nice work. When you were going to school, you went to, right down South Florida. Awesome. 


 Brian
 Go. 


 Josh Wilson
 What were you going to school for? What did you want to be when you grew up? 


 Brian
 Yeah, so I went to school, actually. They had a program in entrepreneurship, so I had a business degree. Min entrepreneurship, which really was a nice mix of finance, management there's some HR. We had some entrepreneurship specific classes where you wrote a business plan, you had to pitch it to a room like Shark Tank kind of style and people criticized or clapped for you kind of thing. Anyway, I really enjoyed that process. I've always loved business. I've worked ever since I could, whether it's in the stores or I worked at a music shop or I worked in college. I also did some software development like database driven web apps. I had a minor in computer science. I had a job on South Beach, working this guy, doing, like, iPhone apps. I was always, like, into technology, into that stuff. I never really wanted to go to the developer side. 


 Brian
 I wasn't that good at it. And I wanted to run a business. I wanted to own a business. I decided, looked at a number of different things, looked at finance like the Wall Street path. Decided I didn't really want to go to New York and didn't really want to maybe sit in front of a computer all day. Decided to come home and just join the family business. And it was like, 2010, I graduated. So 809. We're tough on them and they were in it for 35 years or whatever and looking to retire and kind of get out. If I didn't come in to join, just would have been sold off and the different pieces, and that would have been it. 


 Josh Wilson
 You got a job working family business, you're like exploring 2010, right? We're just coming out of a crackdown on the industry, right? Like tech investments, world real estate. Everything was kind of falling apart. In 2008 ish you stepped into a business at Automotive Repair. During times of recession. Live repair shops actually do well because people will fix rather than buy a new one. When you stepped in live where you turning cranks and wrenches and sweeping flofr. What did that look like when you got a job with that? 


 Brian
 Yeah, in the beginning. Not a mechanic at all. I think I changed oil once and maybe a few tires in my life, but that's okay. It's not my job. Right. We have people who are experts in that. I learned the business. I worked in the stores. I worked behind the counter. I had to learn everything. I was working Min stores five, six days a week, open to close, just trying to absorb as much as I can and try to figure out key where are the opportunities to improve here and where can I have the most impact? 


 Josh Wilson
 What did you see? Right, so coming from the, and entrepreneurship, where it's the pitches, the deals, the excitement of the start ups to now you're behind the counter doing a bunch of stuff, but you start to see before you went to college, you might have missed some things, but now you're behind the scenes and you're starting to see, what opportunities did you see a dad's, the family business. 


 Brian
 Yeah. So, I mean, the couple it's consistency of execution. I think that is the biggest thing that separates businesses that succeed in businesses that don't. The businesses have the most success, have the most consistent execution. The ones that don't, like, every single customer is different. Every single location is different, every single market is different. I think one of the things I saw that was biggest, I'd work between the different stores and Live. Certain people do it this way, some people do it that way. The sales approach, inspection approach, the organization, the computer process of how they built tickets, everything everybody did was just completely different. Honestly, we still struggle with it today. I don't think any business ever truly solves it. But anyway, that was what I thought. The biggest opportunity is find out what should the process be, live what has proven to be the best way to do it? 


 Brian
 How do we get as many of the people, as much of the often doing it consistent? 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. So how did you do that? Right, this is what needed for a company to franchise or scale, right? You need SOP systems, processes, operations, you need these things, but you stepping into it. How did you start to transform it? What was your role in this gig? 


 Brian
 Yeah, I was just hands on approach. I mean, I was in the stores every day and live figured out how were going to do it. We just start by retraining it. We start by defining the why, like, what's the big reason of why we're doing this? We work on the how, which would be the training process. It comes down to before you even talk about processes, do you have the right people? Do we have the right people who are all aligned with achieving the singular goal, whether that's growing the sales or hitting a gross profit target or whatever it is. So, of course, if you don't have the right people, they don't even care the why, they're just there like punching the clock in and out and don't really want to change anything. Just throughout then and throughout now, it's all about how do we get the right people live Jim Collins or whatever, it's like the right people in the right seats on the right bus going in the right direction here. 


 Brian
 It's like that to start A, we have the right people and then B, are we following the right process? I think it's a combination of those two things of Pruning the bush, getting rid of the people who are kind of the dead weight, bringing in people who really want to truly succeed and then making sure we all follow a consistent process. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. So you mentioned Jim Collins book. Great book, right People, right bus, right seat, right role in that. What was your out of all the seats that you've held at the family business? Because now you guys have 30 franchises, 200 employees. You guys are doing really good. As you look back on that bus being built over the years, what has been the best seat for you that you found the most fulfillment and joy? 


 Brian
 Well, I think it changes too. Live in the beginning I was just learning the business. I knew nothing. My goal was just to learn. My goal was to network with other successful franchisees, bringing ideas from outside organization, because what were doing wasn't really working, so I had to expand. Those years my favorite role was the person to go out and figure out what all the best ideas were, right? And then come implement them. As I kind of grew min my role and then I became live the district manager or whatever, the general manager were basically all the stores and kind of people reported up to me. I had a lot of success with that. Live I was able to move the needle, I was able to hire the right people. I was able to get them trained. I continued to evolve. I replaced myself as the district manager with somebody else. 


 Brian
 Now we have live nine stores or whatever it is, and then that kind of continues to happen. I mean, even this past year I replaced myself with a COO who then now all five have we district managers now report up to our singular COO instead of my brother and I now are 50. We own the company. I've enjoyed the process each way and I think that's part of it. I think sometimes people get stuck in live a singular role and maybe they are the bottleneck. Like the owner is always the bottleneck to expand their business. Even now we're at 30 locations and if I wanted to, we could grow to 50 within twelve months, maybe 60 within twelve months. Live that choice is like is me like and my brother, but that decision to grow or not to grow, live we're the bottleneck both ways. 


 Brian
 I enjoy my position now the most, but then I know when I go to the next level and I hire maybe a CEO, I'm probably going to enjoy that the most. I think it's finding what you're really good at and trying to spend as much time on those tasks and the least amount of time on the things you're not good at and that are lower tasks. Oh, my gosh, that changes though. That pyramid of what you're good at and what your highest value task is at the time changes. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. That is so hard to do for an early stage. We don't even have to call it early stage for a business owner to do because I grew up swinging hammers on the construction site and the advice I got, and this is how were trained. Keep it in the family. Right. Which is a terrible piece of advice. 


 Brian
 Right. 


 Josh Wilson
 Live, keep it in the family, don't trust anybody. You got to learn how to do it yourself. You need to know how to do every part of the gig. You have to be really great at it to build and train and do whatever. And that limited it us. Like, I look back and I'm like, oh, that was such terrible way to go ahead and build this. You're saying you need to focus on the strengths, right? 


 Brian
 Yes. For me, my strengths back when were smaller was like, I was good at hiring people. I was good at training them. Right. It became my strength needs to find other people who are good at hiring people live. My strength needs to be identified, their talent, because then if I can do that, then I can duplicate it two times, four times, six times, eight times, right? It comes, how do I then lead and motivate those people live? How do I set clear goals? How do I motivate them? Now it's also the deal side of it. I'm the one putting together most of the deals, creating the relationships with the other franchisees, trying to educate people and just expand my circle and network to attract higher and higher level talent to grow the business mindset wise. 


 Josh Wilson
 Which of the growth points that you have pushed through? What was the hardest one for you personally? 


 Brian
 It would have been two years ago, I would probably say. It was take a note of my dad and uncle's success who ran the company for years, and they did an awesome job, was that they were like, what you said, it was like hands on, you do it yourself. You go to every location every week. And that was our success for years. I was kind of had this limiting belief that we could only grow within, let's say, Philadelphia. I had to personally be involved in every store in every transaction because that's how they did it and that's how I should do it. I think that was the limiting belief. Once I clicked that said, wait, a minute instead of live, me having to be the guy in the stores that does it, what if I'm just able to find somebody who can do it as good as I would? 


 Brian
 That's what allows you to scale. That allowed us to say, hey, let's now go into New Jersey. Let's go into this other market an hour north of us. It's what today is making us think about. Hey, what is a new market, a place right away look like? Because if we can do that, then we can go anywhere in the country. Right. I had to break the idea, and I didn't even know I had the limiting belief. I just said, oh, the bigger you get, the harder it becomes. We want to be proud of all the stores. If you get really big, it's hard to be consistent, it's hard to get the results. People are going to think negatively of us and our reputation because we're just going to be this big corporate entity that nobody cares about or whatever the storyline. I think that's one story or the other story is, hey, we're really good at finding really good people, having clear, simple goals, executing this process, and we can have an excellent company that scaled as big as we want. 


 Brian
 Both stories could be true. It's kind of your decision to choose which one you want to go down. Yeah. 


 Josh Wilson
 So as you're building this. 


 Brian
 How do. 


 Josh Wilson
 You know that you want to keep going? Because you said I could if I wanted to. 50, 60 locations. Twelve months. I don't know if that's what we want. How do how far to go? How big to go? 


 Brian
 Yeah, so I view it as like in our business, it's kind of these stair steps of money we invest to grow and then that can get us to a certain period point, and then it's this decision point. We have to invest again to continue to grow. Or we're kind of at this maximum efficiency model. For us, for example, we have a district manager that can oversee roughly seven locations that are all kind of within 15 to 20 minutes apart. We want them in the stores every day, just like I would have been. So, for example, in Philadelphia, we have 14 stores and we have two guys. That they're kind of at not capacity. If we get to 20 locations just in Philly, we're going to need to add another person. Right. So that's like one of these stairsteps. Same in New Jersey, we have eleven location, two people. 


 Brian
 We have the capacity to probably take on another three or four stores. But then once again, we hit 1415. Now we talk 1617. We're like, oh, it's like maybe too much, but then we have to invest min a third person. Then now we can get to 21. That's how we view it. Same for new markets. We could go into a new market. I need at least five stores to support the payroll of the district person that runs it, so I can't go into a new market with two stores live. We wouldn't make any money, but I can start with four or five, and then I can invest in a few more convert, whatever it gets to seven, eight. Those are what we think through. There an opportunity to get multiple stores? How many can we get to? What problems do we want to solve? Like, do we want to solve problems that are potentially a plane right away, or do we want them all within an hour and a half to be able to get everybody into a meeting once a month here, it adds another level of complication. 


 Brian
 The flip side says, hey, but if we can solve that, then we can go anywhere. That limiting belief of the complication, if we have a solution, would be fine. 


 Josh Wilson
 Personally, what drives you? 


 Brian
 I think business is like a game, and I want to win. I'm just competitive, and I think it's fun. I enjoy the chase of it. I enjoy, I don't know, doing things that people think is not possible or people don't know of. I don't know. I'm in a couple of mastermind groups. I'm min one called Gobunds. I don't know if you're familiar with it, but it's kind of amazing that you don't even know what is possible until you get in a room and you surround yourself with other guys who are doing these crazy things, and it's like, I don't know. I tweet this thing on Twitter and the people, oh, that's not possible. You're just making this up. And it's like, no, it is possible. I don't know. For me, I see these other guys doing these cool things, and I'm like, hey, if they can do it, why not me? 


 Brian
 And I can do these cool things. I can inspire other people, and then they can do cool things, and it just kind of continues anyway, that's why I like doing it. And what else would I do? And read a book all day? I'd rather have fun, and I'm up for the challenge. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. Speaking of books, behind you, there's a bookshelf with a bunch of books. If the office was burning down and you could only grab one of those books, which book would you grab? 


 Brian
 That's a good question. One book? I don't know. A couple of ones that have been impactful for me. I really like What It Takes by Steve Swisherman, founder of BlackRock or Blackstone, one of the two he talks about it takes the same time, effort, and energy to do something small as it does to do something big. I think that concept really stuck with me. I read that back around that time to say, hey, same for us. Just like you were talking live. You do a small deal with 25 grand, it's the same work as $2.5 million deal. It's actually probably easier to do the two and a half million dollar deal. That's kind of allowed us to do these bigger deals. Buying five stores at a time, seven stores at a time. We're looking at a potential deal now, doing a big one, including real estate, more stores and all this stuff. 


 Brian
 It's the same process, it's the same paperwork negotiation, onboarding employees, sending a vendor accounts, whether it's a single store that doesn't make any money or a whole new market that we can make a ton of money out of. So that's a big one for me. I think a lot of times people operate out of fear, like fear of failure, fear of losing money, fear of embarrassment, fear of whatever. I think the more someone can ignore the fear and just go and do it, the better success you're going to have. That's why people don't do the, quote, big things, is because they're operating min a place of fear versus operating at a place of abundance or whatever, that this is possible. I can achieve this. I just need to surround myself with good people, set a plan, execute it. 


 Josh Wilson
 Et peter I grew up, like I said, swinging hammers. Here are some of the jobs that I had. Swing and hammers, digging ditches, wrestling alligators, fighting fires, right? These kind of things, they take maybe some guts and a strong back. I also built a few moving companies from inside the truck. Mindset to me, still is one of the hardest. This of training my mind to say what is possible because there's so many times that I'll look at something, I go, man, that can't be done. Or last time you tried this, you went bankrupt. Last time you did that. Right. There's a lot of those things you mentioned Mastermind, so you can't use that one. How do you go about training your mindset to think bigger and do bigger? 


 Brian
 Yeah, I mean, the first is to identify any time you have a belief or something that comes up that's negative is to sit back and stop and think, is that really true? We can't, I don't know, operate stores, whatever, 100 miles or a plane ride away, 1000 miles away in Florida. But then is that really true? Why can't we? Well, because we're not there. What if we could hire really good people who could be there for them? Well, we can't see the people. Well, what if we do zoom meeting, like in Zoom videos and leverage technology to make it more personable and so I don't have enough money. Well, is there somebody who believes in me who would invest money because they've seen our track record? Or are there banks that would loan us money based on our financials. I think a lot of times it stop and reflecting and asking, is that really true? 


 Brian
 I think just like if I told you some belief or you told me some belief you had and I would like quiz you back on all the things that have you tried this? Did you think of that? I think if you can do that you start to kind of break down the, well, maybe it's not this hard stake in the ground thing anymore. Maybe it is. Well, there is this option, we do have this option and going from there, that's one of them. The other one is that is multiple options. A lot of times people think they only have two choices or they only have one choice. I think if you step back and you really look at it and say, hey, can I list out all my options? You can find there's multiple paths and then one of those paths is how you're going to get there. 


 Josh Wilson
 Super cool. For me, I have to see it, touch it, feel it, taste it, have someone else. For some reason I had to learn the hard way, right? One of my mentors says experience is education for fools who can't learn from someone else. Right? And maybe that was me growing up. Now we run podcast shows and we try to learn from other people's successes and then ride coattails. I believe people pave the path, dive behind something that's going really well and it's a lot cheaper. You live the franchise model, right. You guys have bought and rolled up quite a few franchises. That's essentially something with a franchise. They already have systems, processes and they might not be perfect, but they have movement. Right. Why that versus just building one from scratch? 


 Brian
 Sure. The biggest reason is speed to scale. If you want to grow very quickly, min relative terms. I mean, for me it took twelve years, but it's speed to scale. And there's a couple of reasons. Number one, live here are the benefits at least. Why? Number one, franchise and is a closed network. It's like a country club once you're in it. There is automatic trust that is established between other franchisees. I can call up almost any person in the system or email them and have a conversation and talk to me about business and sales and employees and comp plans and margins and anything I want to ask them about they are most likely going to tell me and I'll tell the same for them. We'll share PNLs, we'll find opportunities of where I'm doing good, where he's doing good to improve. So I think that's a big one. 


 Brian
 There's a closed network. Part of that close network also includes contact information and sales rankings for the entire system. In most brands, different franchise is going to vary . In my system I can see in Philadelphia. New York, Maryland, any market. I want to look at who the top stores are, who the bottom stores are, who owns them, how many do they own, what's their email, what's their phone number. If we want to go and, the top guys I want to learn from, I can call them the guys who are at the bottom probably losing money based on we all have similar cost structures they might be interested in selling, right? So that's a big part of it. The other one, it's also so much easier to sell to an existing franchisee than it is someone outside of the network. The franchise has to approve them, like, just like the country club, whatever. 


 Brian
 They got to get approved. They got to have a certain liquidity. Some of them are really tough or impossible. Some of them are anybody that will take anybody's money, but somebody wants to get out. It's so much easier to sell to someone who is already in the system that's already franchised or approved than going through the process of selling it from the outside. Plus, live with you guys or whoever, it becomes somewhat public information. People start poking around. They want tax returns, they want this, they want that. I've never asked for a tax return in my life. I can look at the sales and nothing else really matters because our cost structure when we buy a location is going to be what our cost structure is, except for the rent and the property taxes, live the pay plans, we're going to implement ours. We're going to implement our pricing program, our health insurance costs. 


 Brian
 So, like, it's very easy for us to buy them because we can just look at a location, know what it's doing. I could give you evaluation within minutes, and the due diligence is just confirmed the lease and that the equipment is not total s*** and we're good to go anyway. That's like a big. All that leads to the speed of doing acquisitions can be a lot easier. I'll stop there, I have a few more, but that's how I'm going to kick it off. Yeah. 


 Josh Wilson
 You talk about roll ups, what does a roll up look like for franchising? 


 Brian
 I mean, it's one company going and buying out all the other operators or as many as they can within the market. So for us, we started with six. We bought two. So I got it to eight. The next year I bought another one or two. The next year I opened up one and bought another one. Next year I bought Live Seven. The next year I bought live five. Next year we did four. These single transactions can start to really add it up. As part of the kind of the roll up, live, it's our single point office. We have our back office, we have our payroll, we have our things and it just streamlines operations. A lot of things that we do that at scale. We can get better pricing from vendors, especially if we consolidate our purchases live. We can get rebates back on parts costs and stuff and that I then have more leverage as 30 live total stores than 30 individual stores would have. 


 Brian
 We can get better health insurance, better liability insurance, better cost on parts. We can recruit better people because there's live this upward movement that someone could start with the tech live someone has started with as a technician with us and then became a store manager and then eventually now has taken over our best location. He even is a potential district manager candidate. One day, the bigger your world Rross, the bigger opportunities are created for everybody who lives within your world. For us, even if we go to 50 locations or hundred, that is going to create more opportunities for people to rise as we continue to grow. I think that's why you would roll up anything. But with franchises, it's just easier. Yeah. 


 Josh Wilson
 When you're with some friends or whatever and a question about a car comes up, do people assume that how to turn wrenches? They're like, oh, yeah, you own an automotive shop. You know how to fix this problem. Can you come over? Fix grammar's car? 


 Brian
 Yeah. No, nobody asked me. They know I'm not. I Ian Hill. You what's wrong with it? I get it. Technically, I could probably do some of it. I'm like, not the worst person in the world when it comes to using a tool, but no, that's not my role. Yeah. 


 Josh Wilson
 One of the things that I saw for business owners is once they get. 


 Brian
 Out of a role. 


 Josh Wilson
 Verifying it. 


 Brian
 Right. 


 Josh Wilson
 So they trust but verify. Live releasing that and not going back in when there's an emergency or going back in when there's an issue or when they're maybe not hitting 80%. How have you protected yourself from going back and diving into roles? 


 Brian
 Yeah, it's hard. People say it's easy. It's not. I think the first thing you do is try to hire really good people and then bite your tongue. Live, for example, my COO, he's live a rock star for us. He just joined important conversations. Guys potentially quitting like a good employee over some things. I'm like, I'm actually in this room, and I can live they're in that room and I can hear him talking because it's kind of interesting. I'm like the flying on the wall. As he's going through it, I want to text him and tell him, live, try this. But event name. I didn't and then he says it. He says the thing I wanted him to say, he had his stake in the group on where weren't going to move from, and he was 100% right. I think that's part of it. Too is just sometimes you bite your tongue. 


 Brian
 You let them do their thing and then later go back and coach them on it. Min this case, the coach was, hey, man, you did a great job. I think you made every decision was the right one, and I think that gives them direction on which way to go, because they need feedback, too. Everybody wants to do a good job. A lot of times, it's just they just don't know. Or maybe they make a bad decision, but a lot of times they just need to have more clarity. 


 Josh Wilson
 Behind you is a guitar. 


 Brian
 Is that yours? 


 Josh Wilson
 Do you play? 


 Brian
 Yeah, originally, actually. So funny. I want to go to the University of Miami because I was really into music. I knew I never could make money as a musician, so then I wanted to get into the music business side of it, like publishing, recording, that kind of thing. Miami had a music business program that was part of somewhat integrated with the business school, and that was my original live. Why university of Miami? That's why I want to go down there. Then if you've ever been. It's a gorgeous campus, like a resort. I ended up switching, not doing the music thing and doing computer science instead. 


 Josh Wilson
 What's your favorite song to play on that guitar? 


 Brian
 Well, now I'm into live. I used to be really good because I used to play all the time. Once you have kids and stuff, you don't seem to play as much. So now I'm into country music. Anything like Zac Brown Band or Live Brothers Osborne, that kind of stuff. Copy. 


 Josh Wilson
 The the the the Deal Scout podcast interview. The guests, Steve Noodleberg and Dave Seymour, two guys that I know, they both bring so much energy to the interviews as you're doing this, and you're looking for future guests. Right. I want my audience, if they'd be a good fit for your show, what do you look for in a perfect guest? 


 Brian
 Energy. Yeah. I mean, energy is a big one. Somebody who sounds like they're asleep at the microphone is really hard, and, like, they talk about the microphone takes your energy down a level, so you got to amp it up. Even something I continue to work on the bringing energy, honestly, they have an interesting take on something. I think people want to hear kind of a new spin on something, not just kind of the same old story, and then they face some level of adversity, and they overcome it. I think we're all pretty interesting topics, whether it's growing a business or live, some investment strategy. Even with Dave Seymour, I've invested in his deals even after being a guest on my podcast. That's how I got to know him, and he's a great dude. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah, that dude has some energy, and we had some fun with him. We went on a few trips together and dude, it's hilarious. So shout out to Dave. Super awesome. So where do people go to subscribe? Give you a five star freaking rating for your show. What's the name of it? One more time. 


 Brian
 Business with Beers. 


 Josh Wilson
 Business with Beers. Okay, cool. So 35 years oldish, I think, right? 


 Brian
 35. 


 Josh Wilson
 You're not going to sit around playing guitar. You're not going to sit around reading books. You're in it because you live the game of it, and you love the challenge, right? You're competitive and you love the challenge. You and I head forward in the future, let's just say 35 years, and we're sitting on a rocking porch, rocking chair in the front porch or whatever, and we're talking about looking back, and we go, we did it, right? We did it, man. Look at what we did. Look at what we accomplished. What was the thing that you looking back 35 years from now would make you the most proud, do you think? 


 Brian
 Yeah. It all comes back to the big reason why you do it, which is your family and wanting to spend as much time with your family as possible. I think that's all why we're looking to build a business. Even for me, it's kind of create the life you want to live and then create a business that then supports that lifestyle. I think all too often people go the other way, they find this business, and then they make their live around the business. For me, live, I have two beautiful wife. We've been together since high school. I have two girls that are six and one and a half ish. I think for me, it's that I was there for every important moment in their life. I take my daughter to school every day and just being able to spend time with them and not feel like I missed anything. 


 Brian
 And so that's the whole point. That would be the reason I would not want to expand if it took the company to the level that whatever I had to personally get involved. I had to work crazy hours, I had to be on the road all the time. For what? To miss them? That would not be worth it to me. I think that's the key. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. For a guy who has 30 different automotive shops, you've seen a lot of cars come in and go out, so you probably see some patterns of good and bad. I'm not going to ask you the bad, but if you could have any car made in the history of mankind as your personal car, like your dream car, what is that? 


 Brian
 Let's see. My wife drives a Subaru Forester. I think they're great family cars. My wife has one. My brother's wife have one. My aunt and uncle have one. I think if you have a family, all wheel drive, live, drive like a car, and it's live a mini SUV. They're great. Me, I would love to drive a Porsche 911 Turbo, but yeah, that's what I would pick. 


 Josh Wilson
 What year and where would you put the car seats? 


 Brian
 So no car seats. So we need another vehicle. I'd be flofr the subaru. A new one. I've never Andrew one, but they look like fun. Yeah, super cool. 


 Josh Wilson
 During this interview, there's probably some questions that I should ask you other than where could people go and connect you with? There's probably a question that fundamentally I just missed the mark. What question should I have asked you? 


 Brian
 Yeah, I think the big one is how we're financing all these things is the big one. And the answer is owner financing. Live we've of the 30 location, 24 of them have been purchased with owner financing. Where basically, the seller of the business becomes the bank. We make a down payment to them and we make monthly payments to them for principal and Internet. I've only gone to a bank once for an acquisition loan. That was the first one in 2016. We've never taken outside money. It's all been bootstrapped. Taking the money we make on the first business to buy the next one, taking that one to buy the next one, and so on. That's how you can get compound growth within a few short years. Because instead of going out and buying that Porsche, which I could if I wanted, or a bigger house or all the stuff, we take the money and we use that as down payments to continue to buy the next one and then pay off the debt with the cash flow we get from it. 


 Brian
 That would be the key, I think, is in Franchising. It's also a lot easier to get on the financing because of that trust. Because I'm known, because I'm on all the committees, right? Because we do well in the rankings. All those things create this establishment of trust which is completely necessary to get a deal. I'm sure. It's probably extremely hard to sell a business with owner financing. Once it reaches a broker. It's very easy to get it when you're the only person talking to them and you just tell them, this is how we do it. And they say, okay. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah, it's interesting because when you guys are going out to buy, if you say, hey, this what I'm looking at. These are success patterns, right? This is how we do it. They get to see a system in a process. They get to see what I fit within this model rather than someone coming and they're going through all this work and they go, oh, by the way, would you own or finance and this and that? It just adds different complexity to the deal. Whereas yours is pretty straightforward. When you guys are on the bypass looking at these deals, do you guys stay within brand, like, within different things? Or do you guys venture outside of the franchise brand and roll them into the one that you have? 


 Brian
 Yeah, so we've done both. I've only opened two from scratch. The rest, 28, have been existing locations which already have customers. They already have a phone number, they already have cash flow. That's priority if there's an existing store in the market, so much of a better investment. But, for example, Pet Boys had one that was they were ending the lease on a building that we found out about. We swooped in there, were able to buy the assets from Peter Boys for 35 grand. The lifts, the tire equipment, everything in the furniture and fixtures, et cetera, $35,000. I think we put 20, maybe more into it with some renovations and just reconfigurations. Were into this thing for live 55 or 60 grand or something. Maybe it's more, but that was live the lowest cost acquisition I've ever done. Went to the landlord and got a direct lease at a pretty good rate because they were about to lose a major tenant with Pet Boys. 


 Brian
 We come in and we sign a good lease with them. That one I just found out through interviewing. I happened to interview a technician and I asked him why he was leaving. He said, well, they're shutting the building down. I said, all right, well, can I have your boss's number? I got to that guy, so can I have your boss's number? She I get to some of the decision makers and so Heath, we'll look at Independence or other major brands. For us, it's just it has to fit our model like it's a major retail area. It's got to be at least 4000 sqft. It has to be not too close to an existing store. It just becomes harder and harder to find the buildings that fit the model, at least in the markets we're currently in. 


 Josh Wilson
 Yeah. Super cool, man. As you're going through this model of franchising, you become well known in the thing. If you had to look at, let's just say for the guy listening, min, Georgia, who is a W Two employee, and they're looking at starting their own business and they want to go franchising. Or the guy who just sold his business and built it from scratch, sold it, and he's like, never want to do the startup stage ever again in my life. They're looking at franchising as an option. Right. What are some of the buy it versus build it? What are some of the things that you've seen as why franchising is a good option for those kinds of people? 


 Brian
 Yeah, great question. I get this a lot. I have a strong opinion on it, which is to not build anything, which is to buy everything, at least to buy the first five of them. You can look to build one. Even us that are the two we've done was number twelve and number 24 a lot. Since you build and you got to build from zero, it takes sometimes a lot longer than the franchise always going to tell you. They may say within twelve months, but it could take 24 months, it could take 36 months. You don't actually know. While it's quote, building and you're growing your sales, you're probably going to be losing money. It's much easier to sustain the cash drain when you've got live six other locations or whatever the territories, however the metrics are that are then supporting that and then funding that. 


 Brian
 You're not live coming out of pocket and draining your personal savings. I'd rather live, buy, build it up. You got good cash flow, you have some cash flow now that you can invest in this new one and you can then sustain twelve months before it's profitable or whatever it is. So that's my first answer. The second thing is what type of franchise to look at. It's my opinion that you should be looking at legacy brands that have been around for 20 live years. Because legacy brands have legacy owners. With the baby boomers, there's like, whatever, 10,000 a day retiring. A lot of them are business owners and a lot of them, if they wanted to exit already, they would have. If they still own it's because they have no exit plan. They don't have a kid. They want to give it away too. They don't really want to list it because of the fear of their employees finding out and quitting. 


 Brian
 And now they're really screwed. A lot of them just hold on to it, right? They get more and more negative about the business because they don't want to be in it. You swoop in, they see yourself, themselves, min you become the easy button. You then breathe live new life, new energy into the business and you get automatic increases. The Brandon T, Crumble Cookie or whatever the hot franchise is not going to have legacy owners. You can make a lot of money with some of the new concepts, but there's a risk reward ratio, right, versus you go min, you find a legacy brand, guys who want to retire, then it's a safer bet, at least in my opinion. That's what I would look for is a legacy. 25 plus years. 


 Josh Wilson
 Super cool. Where can people go to connect with you and do a deal with you? 


 Brian
 Yeah, so I'm on LinkedIn. I said, I have a big LinkedIn following Brian beers. I'm also on Twitter at Brian Beers. This will be the two main place where I'm at and Heath. Happy to chat with people if anybody's interested in learning about franchising. I've got a lot of content on it and working on kind of just building the education platform to teach people. A lot of people don't think of franchise when they think of building wealth, but in fact, for the right people, it can be an excellent path. Flofr people that want to scale pretty quickly. 


 Josh Wilson
 Super cool. What we'll do is we'll put your contact information in the show notes. So, fellow deal makers, the mission purpose, everything we do on this show is to connect deals and deal makers. If you hear a guest that interests you, connect with them. Connect with them. Say, hey, heard you on the show and I want to do a deal with you. If you have a deal that you'd like to talk about here on the show, head over the deal. Scout.com, fill out a quick form, maybe we'll get you on the show next. Till then, we'll talk to you all on the next episode. Thank you, Brian. Bye. 

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Brian Beers

CEO

I’m an entrepreneur who’s grown a small family auto repair franchise business into a 30-location enterprise generating over $36 million in revenue per year.

I can teach your audience how to select a franchise to