In this exclusive Q&A, we learn about Beeline Bikes from its co-founder and CEO Pete Buhl.
Franchise Chatter (FC): What is Beeline Bikes?
Pete Buhl (PB): Simply put, Beeline Bikes is the country’s largest, full-service mobile bike shop offering expert bike service and advice at any location, day and time of a customer’s choosing. By combining an innovative technology platform and years of bike industry know-how, we have created a best-in-class customer experience. We started with a small team of bicycle fanatics in 2013 and have been growing ever since. Through an exclusive partnership with Raleigh and Diamondback Bikes, we also offer bike sales and delivery, as well as parts, service and accessories.
FC: How many Beeline Bikes locations are there?
PB: Currently, our mobile bike shops operate in 17 territories across the U.S. in Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, New Mexico, New York, Texas and Virginia.
FC: What are the brand’s domestic expansion plans? Are there any international expansion plans?
PB: In Q2 of 2017, we had our most successful quarter in franchise sales to date, signing agreements to develop 25 new mobile bike shops across eight new territories. We are continuing to expand throughout all 50 states, and recently entered into Indiana for the first time. We’re also ramping up to open a mobile bike shop in Chicago before the end of the year. We have not announced any international expansion plans, but we continue to monitor for opportunities.
FC: What makes Beeline Bikes an attractive franchise opportunity?
PB: Beeline is a unique business model that is all about convenience, which is something consumers value in today’s busy world. Beeline has developed a technology platform to streamline customer interaction, enhance operator efficiency and automate the supply chain, enabling owners and operators to profitably and efficiently run their own Beeline fleet of mobile bike shops in their local community. Our flexible business model has perfected the process of convenience while providing unparalleled bike services and products to our customers.
FC: How does the Beeline Bikes experience differ from its competition?
PB: Beeline Bikes is backed by angel investors, Accell Group and Backcountry.com. These partnerships allow franchisees to gather business from some of the strongest brands in the cycling industry through order fulfillment. Our franchise partners also benefit from being trusted Amazon fulfillment specialists for online bicycle orders. These additional sources of income can boost sales and help build a customer base, which is something our competitors cannot and do not offer.
FC: Do you require your franchisees to have a background in bikes or in the bicycling industry?
PB: It is not required, but preferred. The cycling industry has seen a major growth in non-traditional channels over the past few years. Those who are heavily involved in the industry are very passionate about it and have sought out Beeline to capitalize on these industry changes. We’ve found that franchisees who share our passion and have a high “Bike Industry IQ” tend to thrive in our system.
FC: What do you look for in the ideal franchise candidate?
PB: Beeline Bikes is currently seeking qualified and passionate entrepreneurs to help grow our brand. Candidates should have business experience, preferably in the bicycle industry.
FC: What makes Beeline Bikes a great concept to invest in?
PB: At Beeline Bikes, we give our franchise partners full access to our network and platform to dominate their market. This includes e-commerce access; access to our technology platform and corporate accounts, as well as our mobile model expertise. Beeline also offers a comprehensive training program, called Beeline University, to equip our franchisees with the tools they need to build their mobile business.
FC: What support does Beeline Bikes offer its franchisees?
PB: We offer full support to our franchisees, including e-commerce integration, on-call support, marketing and training. Here’s a breakdown of each:
- E-Commerce Integration – Our platform acquires customers from new online bike purchases from Amazon, Competitive Cyclist, Raleigh, Diamondback and more.
- On-Call Support – Our in-house support team buffers customer inquiries and is on call to provide our franchisees with answers to system, supply chain and bike questions.
- Marketing – Our marketing team uses proven techniques to acquire customers and build the brand in your local market. Each mobile shop participates in a 13-week market launch program to ramp up their business.
- Training – Beeline University offers a comprehensive training program covering all aspects of mobile bike shop operation, including owning/operating a business, marketing, corporate sales and technical certifications.
FC: How can our readers learn more about franchising opportunities with Beeline Bikes?
PB: You can visit https://beelinebikes.com/franchise to learn more about the franchise opportunity and check out available territories.