Name: Masood Kasim; Country of Origin: Pakistant; Immigrated to US: 1981; Franchise Name:Nestlé® Toll House® Café by Chip®; Launched: 2009; Franchises Owned: 3; Estimated Annual Revenue: $1.5 million: Jobs Created: 25
Pakistani immigrant combines the power of an international brand and attention to detail into million dollar business
Masood Kasim immigrated from Pakistan to the United States at the age of 18 to pursue a college education. He originally planned to study law, but began working at a Denny’s restaurant to support himself, and quickly moved up the ladder from dishwasher to a management position.
His employer was so impressed with his intelligence and work ethic that they volunteered to pay for his college if he would study business. “Should I go to law school and pay out of my own pocket,” he asked himself, “or should I just take this offer?” he asked himself.
Masood grabbed the offer, eventually earning two bachelors degrees plus a masters through the program, and in return, he gave the company 10 years, eventually rising to the level of district manager, responsible for 22 restaurants. Thats when he learned that was as far as he could progress with that company. “I wanted to own my own business, but at that time there was no franchise opportunity where I worked.”
Nestle: A Brand to Grow With
With a decade of restaurant experience under his belt, Masood turned to the convenience store business. But that segment didn’t satisfy him. “So I started looking at several companies that had a major name and stores all over the place, and decided I wanted to be a part of that,” he recalls. So, Masood began researching the opportunities that fit best with his experience. “I did a search and just come up with several food concepts, and the best one was Nestlé,” he says.
Everybody from India and Pakistan, knows the Nestlé brand. I loved the product, and the concept too!
Although the Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip franchise concept was new at the time, Masood immediately understood the power of a brand known throughout the world and he believed in its potential. Nestlé is a name well recognized name all over the world he says. “Everybody from India and Pakistan, knows the Nestlé brand. I loved the product, and the concept too.” So, in 2009, he bought his first Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip franchise.
Nestlé® Toll House® Café by Chip® Franchise Costs: Franchise Fee: $30,000/ Royalty Fee: 6 % /Total Investment: $151,750 –$475,300/ Required Net Worth: $300,000/Liquid Capital:$100,000/
A Powerful Brand Helps With Financing
Masood was able to finance his first franchise with a combination of savings and a bank loan.When he went to his local bank, he got a pleasant surprise. “They treat you differently if you are associated with a brand name,” he says. “Banks are comfortable because with a recognized brand, the chance of success is far greater than with something you do on your own. There’s a track record of other stores, how they’re doing overall, and how the brand is doing. So the banks and other financial institutions have all that to look into it.”
An Evolving Franchise
When Masood first started with Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip, the franchise concept focused on Nestlé cookies, such as the famous Toll House cookie, cookie cakes and ice cream. He had a couple of stores in malls and really liked the concept, in part because it was unique and had less competition. “I thought to myself, ‘I’m not getting into the food business where everybody’s selling sandwiches. I’m getting into a business where there’s less competition,” says Masood. ” That’s why I chose sweets. Besides, I have a weakness for sweets, and you know, everybody loves a warm, freshly baked cookie!’”
I couldn’t be happier than the stage I am in, or happier with the system. I really love what I do.
Today’s Nestlé® Toll House® Café by Chip® franchise has expanded its menu to reach more customers. Not only does it offer sweets and shakes, but also savory dishes like crepes, rollup sandwiches, and flavored coffees. As the concept has grown, so has Masood’s business. He now has two Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip locations and 25 employees. “I couldn’t be happier than the stage I am in, or happier with the system. I really love what I do.”
Masood’s Tips for Becoming a Successful Franchisee
- Recognize that someone has already done the trial and error for you! The brand is already there, and the only thing you’ve got to do is execute the successful business model.
- If you want to succeed, be prepared to roll up your sleeves and wear several hats; you’re not just there to manage a restaurant.
- You have to buy into the franchise system, and believe in the system. And, if you do, you’ll be successful.