Home | General | Sona Med Spa Franchisee takes over as Franchisor

Sona Med Spa Franchisee takes over as Franchisor

It was reported today that Byron Ashbridge and Joe Pitt, who operate five Sona MedSpa franchises in Charlotte, Greensboro and Raleigh North Carolina, have purchased the controlling interest in S0na MedSpa International, previously based in Franklin, TN. Since 2002, Ashbridge and Pitt have run some of the most successful locations in the company and will build upon their accomplishments in North Carolina to fortify, grow and improve the operation. This includes developing and implementing extensive staff training and marketing programs, and providing franchisees with proven systems and best practices to ensure optimal performance, customer satisfaction and profitability. The existing franchise locations will now be company-owned training centers and be the models for “best practices” in the medical spa industry. Franchisees will now have access to these company-owned centers in order to assist in the training and development of their respective staff, as well as determining marketing and operational tactics to use in their centers.

It was reported at Let’s Talk Franchising on May 26th, 2007 that Sona MedSpa Was Guilty of Fraud, Investors Liable! In that case an arbitrator in Atlanta, Georgia awarded nearly $400,000 to a franchisee who was duped into buying a Sona MedSpa franchise on the basis of “faulty” information about Sona’s hair-removal services. The arbitrator not only held liable the Nashville-based franchisor, Sona MedSpas, and its founder, Dennis Jones, but also a group of prominent investors that acquired the franchisor, but then failed to correct the misleading information. The investors included Carousel Capital of Charlotte, N.C., its Chairman, Nelson Schwab II, Jim Amos, former President of Mail Boxes, Etc., and his daughter, Heather Rose. As a result of the investors’ failure to act on the information, the franchisee not only proceeded with his investment, but also repeated the faulty information to its own clients.

Subesequently Sona MedSpa wrote a letter to Let’s Talk Franchising claiming the results of the arbitration were misrepresented, that letter was published Sona MedSpa claims the results of the arbitration were misrepresented on May 31st 2007.

The new owners of the franchisor; franchisees Ashbridge and Pitt offer the following five positioning statements, to summarize their approach to operating as the franchisor of Sona Med Spa, this is the platform upon which they will build the company:

  • “We have been S0na MedSpa franchisees for the last five years and have managed highly successful, customer-centric centers. We understand our franchisees’ challenges and the enormous potential the Sona franchise possesses. We clearly understand our success as a company is completely dependent upon the success of our franchisees.”
  • “We are dedicated to growing the business and committed to the financial stability and performance of the company and its franchisees.”
  • “Before actively selling any new franchises, our primary focus will be on helping existing franchisees grow and become more profitable.”
  • “We will provide the supplementary marketing and operational support to assist our franchisees in taking full advantage of their market potential.”
  • “In addition to eventually growing the number of Sona MedSpa centers, we are equally committed to growing the number of company-owned locations.”

“Sona MedSpa is a proven concept, leader in the aesthetic industry, and is positioned for long-term success. We will bring the company to the next level using the experience we’ve gained from our accomplishments in North Carolina,” says Sona MedSpa International’s new President and Co-CEO Byron Ashbridge. “We have been franchisees, and strongly believe in the Sona MedSpa concept and brand. This positive experience will serve as the operational blueprint for the future. We also know the concept is a sound one and that the demand for personal aesthetic and wellness services will continue to grow.”

The new Sona MedSpa International will be based in Charlotte, North Carolina, where the company’s Business Development Center is located and the new training center will be established.

Founded in 1997, Sona MedSpa International, Inc. is one of the world’s largest medical spa companies, specializing in medically supervised aesthetic services in a luxury spa environment. Sona MedSpa’s offerings include the latest in laser hair removal, skin rejuvenation, botox and dermal filler injections, meso therapy and other fat and cellulite reduction services, medical-grade microdermabrasion, acne treatments, spider vein removal, and smoking cessation. Sona MedSpa centers are currently located in San Jose, San Mateo, Costa Mesa, Sacramento, Chicago, Grand Rapids, Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro, Las Vegas, Harrisburg, Memphis, Nashville, Richmond, Little Rock, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Virginia Beach, Newport News, Houston and Miami.

Cross Posted at Let’s Talk Franchising

About Jim Coen


  1. The concept has “legs” and the demographics for the business with the aging baby boomers is ripe. Honest franchisors will not use every legal opportunity to skim money from your wallet through suppliers and other means…these arbitration hearings all seem to point to dishonesty.

  2. Are you kidding. Heather Rose had no business being in the position. Her father gets the funding then installs his daughter to operate the company. She has an H/R background only. She would not even be able to keep up in a converation with Pitt. She treated the business as if it was her personal bank account. She had an employee who embezzeled 40 to 50 thousand dollars and did not report it to her board. She worked out a payment plan. No wonder the company went bust. I worked with Sona and I can tell you that Heather Rose is a fake. We all knew of the affairs she was having and the many men she spent time with on her business trips. We would have a prayer meeting at work and then she and her buddy Karen would go out and drink. I am scared of the Amos machine so I will not say my name but it really is sad that so many people lost money. Heather even expensed drinks/dinner and horseback riding for a guy she picked up at the Jackson Hole IFA event. I can not believe they dont know what is going on. We heard in the office that she was all over this guy and also the same behavior in Chicago. She is not what she claims to be. Buyer beware.

  3. Do not trust Heather Rose. She has had many affairs and has an STD.

  4. Heather Rose lead Sona Med Spas into the dirt. She is a poor example of leadership, etchics and a soiled woman. She is known to have had affairs without regard to whom knew. Her position on the IFA board was secured by her father and she is held in little regard. She promotes a great christian value system but does little to prove it. She also was known to have had affairs at (MBE) one was a Swedish guy named Matt’s, the other was a co-worker named Jay. While at Sona she had numerous encounters, one at the IFA Board meeting in Wy where she picked up the lounge singer and spent much time with him (Chad Bradford). She allowed a person to steal from the company without reporting it to her board. I worked with her and I can tell you first hand that she has no morals and is way into herself. She trys to dress like a 25 year old woman. It is digusting to see. We use to hold prayer meetings in the office and then have to field calls from men that she was courting while on the road. We all knew that she was married but she just did not care. It was uncomfortable to be around her husband at functions. She almost lived at the resturant (Bone Fish) that was close to the office. She and our sales director would go there most nights after work. She is not qualified to operate a company and I believe that her father set up the company to have her run it. Her husband use to call her everday trying to get her to come home so that could have dinner or do something, it was quite clear that she enjoyed other men’s company. I hear that she and her father are trying to aquire another company. Beware. By the way she divorced her husband and left him without a penny while making sure that kept all of the assets and hid the rest from him. What go’s around comes around.

  5. Wowie, would you post that if you were required to post some kind of handle next to those allegations. I don’t that woman from Adam, but I think those allegations whether true or not shouldn’t be allowed to be posted. Sounds like you’re unhappy with what? Her management skills or her social habits. Seems like her management skills might be more important than what you written.

    As an aside, I have a small business and came to these boards to understand a franchise now in the industry, which seem not to be working well. But that one aside, it seems that other than the big ticket items………….there are lots of small start up franchise and maybe even those with some age, that are truly a bad place to put your money.

  6. Heather Rose and Tasti D Lite. I do not agree that she will follow Mr. Amos to his new venture. They might as well start a new MBE team, there are only several members not present. I know for fact that she has little regard for most of that team. It would be a good time for her to strike out on her own. I worked on the Sona concept and I always thought that she was not ready for the role/position she had been given. There was a $400,000 loss and vast legal fees paid at Sona. I am sure that she has learned a huge lesson in the operataions of franchising and the power of the Blog. The buildouts were costly and involved such treatments that you needed to be an expert to operate the business and medical combined. No teacher like experience. I do believe that she would function well in a large structured company. If you take the monies be prepared for the fallout when it does not work.

  7. Heather (AMOS) Rose, who cares? She is out of the game. Who would hire her with her business and personal reputation? I bet she doesnt even show herself at any future IFA events. AS for her personal lifestyle everyone is found out at some point. If you are going to present yourself as a christian woman with high ethics and character you better well be assured that folks are going to hold you to that. I believe that Sona and Heather Rose have been exposed as a less than desirable franchise and key executive to partner with. I do believe that Jim Amos paved the way for her in the business world, I am not sure but I do think that the only positions that she has ever held were provided for by Mr. Amos. I was at the Sona office when they first opened, they had secured additonal office space (another floor), there offices were very nice. I understand that they never used the additional space and the last time I was there it was barely occuiped. I do think that Dennis Jones had run the company better before the experts came in.

  8. Jay the short architect guy? Not sure who Matt from Sweden is…. There is dirt in every office. Anyone know what Heather is up to these days?

  9. I thought she also had an affair with Jay, what a tramp. I am sure that she is out of franchising. Thats nice she preached the christian ethics the whole time she was being un faithful to her husband. Everyone new about Matt,s he was a international franchisee. Heather Rose is a big fake. I doubt she could get a job in franachising with all the negative things that I have seen and red about her. Jim Amos cant cover that up. She behaved really poorly at IFA board meetings and I have since seen that she is no longer a IFA board member. I bet Jim Amos is ashamed to have her as a daughter. She will show up at Tast D Lite sooner or later. She was chased out of franchising in my opinion. She was last seen heading south with some country singer she picked up at the board meeting. Her ethics and character have been exposed to all. I would not doubt it if Jay shows up there either. I would stay away from her in any business setting.

    Fran Man 59

  10. HEATHER ROSE. Beware we have heard that she is back. Lawyers must love the Amos/Rose family. Job security!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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