Winmark Corp (formerly Grow Biz), franchisor of the retail stores Play It Again Sports, Once Upon a Child, Plato’s Closet and Music Go Round, has a new franchise concept called Wirth Business Credit. It’s mission is to help small businesses lease equipment.
Leasing can have many advantages for a small business owner: preservation of capital and credit for other expenses and investment in growth, simpler bookkeeping and tax reporting, tax advantages, improves financial ratios, etc.
Why would someone choose to lease from Wirth Business Credit over any of the other many leasing companies? I don’t know, unless their rates are cheaper and terms are more attractive. However, I doubt whether the tight structural constaints of a franchise is the best means to compete in a business where most sales comes down to price and, to a somewhat lesser extent, customer service.
Wirth charges around 9 percent to 14 percent today compared to a bank prime-lending rate of 8.25 percent, Morgan said. Winmark and its franchise owners earn a profit by building fees into the interest rate, much like points that are added to a home mortgage loan…..
Wirth President Mark Hooley said the company stands out from rivals because of its local presence, its automated leasing system that provides approvals in four hours or less, and the ability to finance up to 100 percent of equipment value…..
Wirth franchise owners pay an average of $60,000 to do business in a certain geographic area, including franchise, computer and marketing fees. In exchange, the company provides the brand, the business model, cash for leases, training, marketing and the collection of overdue leases.
I especially agree with the final comment in the article:
“Financing can be complicated and challenging,” Faras said. “But my part of the business is really about sales. You have to already understand sales.”
It often comes down to sales in a franchised or startup business.