Senior Zees Celebrate National Grandparents Day as Entrepreneurs

While it’s a holiday that doesn’t come with the same level of fanfare as Mother’s and Father’s Day, National Grandparents Day is celebrated each year on the first Sunday after Labor Day – which is Sep. 10 in 2023. While many grandparents agree with the sentiment that every day is Grandparents Day, it’s an annual opportunity to treasure our inter-generational family connections and the quality time that leads to so many cherished memories. In support of this approaching date, Unleashed Brands reached out to a few of our own senior entrepreneurs to get their thoughts on what business ownership means to them. Keep reading to discover what they had to say!

Within the franchising industry, seniors are often referred to as “encore” owners – those aged 55 and up. And according to SCORE’s 2023 Megaphone of Main Street Report, these encore entrepreneurs make up a little over half of all small business owners in the U.S. This statistic isn’t as surprising, however, when one considers the more stable financial position that many seniors enjoy thanks to a lifetime of saving money and planning for retirement. Approximately 74% of senior franchisees self-finance their franchise purchases. That many of these senior franchisees choose franchising is a welcome development for our industry and, as you’ll see, their reasons for getting into entrepreneurship are as varied as one might expect.

Why Seniors Choose Franchise Ownership

The annual SCORE report also sheds some light on the reasons why seniors choose franchise ownership. These so-called “encore” entrepreneurs differ from their younger counterparts in several categories. Almost a third report using franchise ownership as a means of income to supplement their retirement years. Almost a quarter do so to achieve financial independence from family members. Seniors aged 55+ make up only 21% of the U.S. population, but own 50.9% of all small businesses. When surveyed as to where they find the greatest amount of support for their businesses, family and friends ranked the highest. Perhaps that’s why so many seniors get into franchising to establish a legacy business – an operation that can be passed down to younger generations to preserve wealth within the family.

Meet Brian and Kris O’Shea, Unleashed Brands Franchisees…

Brian and Kris O’Shea of Ardmore, PA recently took the proverbial leap of faith and became franchise owners for the first time – something they’d always been interested in pursuing. “I wanted to explore franchise ownership, but I just didn’t know which concept to pursue,” said Brian O’Shea. “But after trying to sign up our son for local gymnastics, we couldn’t find a class for him. With the knowledge that our area lacks children’s activities, we signed on and became owners of The Little Gym.” For the O’Sheas, it was all about the freedom and flexibility that come with entrepreneurship. Oh, and the legacy aspect didn’t hurt either. “We’re just about to get started with our franchise location and The Little Gym is definitely something I hope to pass down to my family one day,” says Brian.

Meet Federico and Haydee Carvallo, Unleashed Brands Franchisees…

The dynamic duo of Federico and Haydee Carvallo, have been franchise owners since 2018, having purchased multiple Urban Air and The Little Gym franchises, making them multi-unit, multi-brand (MUMBO) owners. They chose franchising for a simple reason. “I wanted to focus on growing my business and have the franchisor help me with everything else,” says Federico. As for their eventual plans, these units are meant to be legacy businesses for their family members. “We’re looking at further expansion, with a goal in mind of passing the businesses down to our children.” Not only is this an admirable plan, but franchise ownership has provided them with something else that’s pretty special. “We just love the financial independence aspect of it and our ability to help others,” he states.

If you’re fast-approaching your own retirement, but aren’t yet ready to ease up on working, you too can explore the benefits of franchise ownership – something many seniors in the U.S. are choosing as the “Second Act” of their careers. Getting started with your options is easy, especially if you have the opportunity to join one of the upcoming Launch Days, a monthly occurrence at Unleashed Brands. To find out when the next session is scheduled, reach out today and we’ll be back in touch shortly with your answer.

A Little More About Us…

The Unleashed Brands platform includes Urban Air Adventure Park, Snapology, The Little Gym, XP League, Class 101, and Premier Martial Arts youth enrichment franchises. As the parent company, Unleashed Brands was founded to curate and grow the most innovative and profitable business opportunities that help kids learn, play and grow. Over the last 10 years, the team at Unleashed Brands has built a proven platform and know-how for scaling businesses that focus on serving families. All have become first-in-category brands by providing fun, engaging, and inspiring experiences that help kids with their No. 1 development goal – to become who they were destined to be. To speak with one of our franchise experts and learn more about our children’s business opportunities, simply fill out this form and an Unleashed Brands representative will be in touch shortly.