Mallon will Oversee the Frozen Yogurt Franchisor’s Sales and Expansion Efforts
16 Handles, a popular self-serve frozen yogurt franchise based in New York City, announced Erik Mallon as its new vice president of franchise development. In addition to overseeing 16 Handles’ sales, Mallon will manage its national expansion. This position came as 16 Handles was acquired by its largest franchise owner and CEO Neil Hershman and YouTube star Danny Duncan. Mallon is joined on the leadership team by his wife, Lisa, who is the new vice president of franchise relations and business development. They are 16 Handles franchise owners themselves and operate in Fairfield, Conn.
“We’ve always known there was a great potential for 16 Handles outside of the New York region, and we are excited to stand alongside Neil and help with the next chapter for our forward-thinking frozen yogurt brand. As franchisees ourselves, Lisa and I are excited to be named to the leadership team to share our unique perspectives on operations and growth,” Mallon said in a statement.
Mallon looks forward to expanding the brand. “I am excited to bring our brand to markets throughout the U.S by finding ideal franchise candidates. Our initial expansion will begin in Texas and in Florida, where we have one location in Boca Raton.”
He wanted to own a business that was fun, exciting, and made people smile when they experienced the product. 16 Handles fits that criteria, in Mallon’s view. “I knew if I could find such a business, then we would have long- term success. We bought into the franchise back in 2011 because we loved the self-serve concept. We knew customers would be happier if they could do it themselves and make their own creations.”
Hershman believes that the Mallons are a great fit for the leadership team. “We are investing in the right people as we execute our growth plan. Erik and Lisa have a first-hand understanding of the franchisee mindset and offer a unique level of support new franchisees can trust and rely on every step of the way,” Hershman said in a statement.
Erik brings over two decades of sales experience to the new role and has worked with franchisors including My Gym Children’s Fitness Center, Huntington Learning Center, and Nathan’s Famous.
The Mallons and Franchising
16 Handles isn’t the couple’s first stab at business ownership. They started out as franchisees with My Gym Children’s Fitness Center in 2000 and opened three locations. “I was asked to be part of the corporate team after a few years due to my sales experience, knowledge of the business, and my successful operation as an area developer,” Erik said.
He adds that his favorite aspect of the franchise industry is “when you have a successful unit, you have the knowledge and experience to own multiple units, which leads to long-term financial success.”
Working with his wife for over two decades has been a great partnership, Mallon said. “One of the things that makes our business relationship work is that our strengths and weaknesses complement each other. In most cases, we know our roles and rely upon each other to get things done and solve any issues that arise.”
Mallon advises that prospective franchise owners should find a business they are passionate about, and franchisors should focus on attracting the right candidates, not just on investors with capital. “The key to being a successful franchisor is having successful franchisees who want to open additional units and continue to look for other growth opportunities in their existing business.”