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Pet Waste Pickup: No Franchise Necessary

pooThe Crain’s Chicago publication profiled several pet “waste management” businesses, where the business owner will visit yards and scoop up the pet waste. It’s generally a profitable, flexible services business, and can grow rapidly by word of mouth. The $25,000 franchisee fee and 6-8% in total royalty and fees each year most often do not seem worth the payoff. Spending the $25,000 on smart, targeted advertising is more than enough to build a client base, and spending 10% of sales on advertising ongoing should be more than enough to grow the business each year by twice the investment. If there was a franchise brand that most dog owners recognized, than the franchise fees would be a fair exchange. But that is just not the case.

Here is a glimpse from the article:

To start, the couple spent $20 on two scoopers and $1,500 on an ad in Save on Everything — a coupon book mailed to 150,000 people in Chicago. Within two weeks, they had their first 25 customers. Now they have 120 weekly clients and are expecting to bring in around $80,000 this year.

Another article in the same issues touches on the broader pet services industry.

About Ryan Knoll

Attorney and advisor with an interest in franchising. Feel free to email me comments and questions on the "Contact Us" page.

11 comments

  1. The business almost seems too simple. Startup costs are low and will mostly go towards advertising. But I think posting a few flyers in churches and direct mail mail work to get a worthwhile group interested. I wonder how many competitors can operate in a single neighborhood?

  2. $25,000 franchise fee? My friend has a pet containment business that is a franchise and the fee was only $5,000. And he makes over $250,000/yr. and he is only in his 3rd year. Three employees and the noral overhead. It’s all advertising. What kind of person would spend that kind of money of a franchise fee???

  3. There are 300,000 million people in this world. Your going to find some suckers. Thats what these companies thrive on. You live in learn in this world, that’s an expenisve way to learn.

  4. #2 Doug-
    Pet containment is different than poop scooping. So your friend installs radio and wall fences to keep pets in a contained area? I find your claim pretty hard to believe. What do you mean “make” $250,000 a year? Is that sales, net income, or is that positive net cash flow at the end of the year?

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