Celebrities Own and Operate Franchises

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They say a fool is quickly separated from his money. Everybody’s heard about athletes, singers and actors who have lost fortunes due to poor investment choices. A growing trend among celebrities is to invest in franchises to protect their savings and to generate income. Celebrities aren’t the only people who can turn a tidy profit by getting involved in a franchise opportunity. As long as you have the drive to succeed and are willing to work long and hard, you can achieve economic prosperity. An added benefit is that franchises can be established in rural or urban settings. You can even work some franchises from the comfort of your home. As a franchise owner, you’re the boss, and you don’t have to answer to anybody.

These celebrities are enjoying the many fruits of their franchises.

• Drew Brees - Jimmy John's
The New Orleans Saints Super Bowl MVP quarterback got used to Jimmy John's Gourmet Sandwiches when he was going to college at Purdue University in Indiana.  He thought Jimmy John’s would fit in well in New Orleans, so he opened his own restaurant franchise back in 2008. He said he enjoys being part of the culinary culture of The Big Easy. Smells are free, and Jimmy John’s is renowned for its aggressive, amusing marketing strategy.

• Rick Ross - Wingstop
Rapper Rick Ross loves Wingstop so much that he sings about it. He mentioned the food franchise in his cut “MC Hammer.” He lamented that his date wanted to eat at a fancy bistro, but he wanted to go to Wingstop. That craving got the better of him. Ross opened several Wingstops in Miami and Memphis. He says he’s sharing his favorite wings with his favorite cities.

• Phil Mickelson - Five Guys
Everybody’s favorite lefty loves Five Guys Burgers and Fries. He talks about them all the time. Maybe that’s because he owns the rights to Five Guys franchises in Orange County, California. He swears that he has eaten Five Guys for six consecutive days. He says the burgers are the best he’s ever had.

• Ted Turner - Ted's Montana Grill
Who’d have thought that Atlanta mogul Ted Turner would be invested in a franchise? He started the Ted’s Montana Grill chain with George McKerrow Jr., the founder of LongHorn Steakhouse Inc. The restaurants sell steaks and burgers made from American bison. McKerrow raises the bison in Montana, and he sells them to the restaurants.

• Jamal Mashburn - Papa John's & Outback Steakhouse
Jamal Mashburn learned the value of a dollar early. He parlayed his NBA salary from the Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat and Charlotte Hornets into a franchise fortune. He owns some 70 restaurants, including 32 Papa John’s Pizza shops and 38 Outback Steakhouse franchises. He is a successful athlete who didn’t waste his huge salary on partying.

• Peyton Manning - Papa John's
Papa John’s is the official pizza of the NFL, and it’s the official franchise of Peyton Manning. You have probably seen him advertising for the chain on Sundays during professional football games. He reportedly owns 21 Papa John’s franchises in Denver. He bought them immediately before Colorado legalized recreational marijuana use. Sounds like a pretty smart move to buy into the ultimate munchies supplier.

• Earvin "Magic" Johnson - TGI Friday's & Burger King
The Lakers Hall of Famer has long been an investor. His first venture was to buy several AMC Theaters in inner cities. He opened a TGI Friday’s restaurant in Ladera, California. He bought 30 Burger King restaurants in the southeastern United States in 2004. At one point, Magic cast his spell over more than 100 Starbucks franchises that he owned. He no longer owns any locations of the world renowned coffee franchise.

• Shaquille O’Neal - Auntie Anne's
Auntie Anne’s are Shaq’s favorite pretzel, as evidenced by his purchase of eight franchises in Buffalo, New York, and nine other stores in Michigan. Shaq gets around, but he hasn’t gotten around to advertising for Auntie Anne’s. He’s spread too thin as it is, but if they tempt him with some pretzels, he might make the time.

• Michael Strahan - Burger King
Kelly Rippa’s new partner and former New York Giants defensive end bought into 18 Burger King franchises in the Norfolk and Richmond, Virginia, areas. He partnered up with Kevin Faulk of the New England Patriots, Caron Butler from the National Basketball Association's Washington Wizards, NFL Hall of Famer Marcus Allen and Donnie Edwards of the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs. The restaurants are located in predominantly black neighborhoods where they offer employment to the local youth and expand Burger King’s urban presence.

• Jimmy Buffett - Krispy Kreme
The island escapist started his own string of restaurants and cafés under the brands Margaritaville and Cheeseburger in Paradise. In 2000, he bought the rights to open Krispy Kreme outlets in the Palm Beach area of Florida. This was part of Krispy Kreme’s push to double their outlets across the country.

Though it’s unlikely you’ll see these actors, singers or athletes flippin’ burgers, you can bet that they’re counting profits from their investments. They picked franchises that had meaning for them, and their planning succeeded.

  • Author: Matt Biskup
  • Date: November 05, 2013
  • Category: Franchise Opportunities
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