FASTSIGNS International, Inc. is the worldwide franchisor of more than 700 independently owned and operated FASTSIGNS centers. FASTSIGNS locations provide comprehensive signage and visual graphic solutions to help companies of all sizes and across all industries attract more attention, communicate their message, promote their products, help visitors find their way and extend their branding across all of their customer touch points.
Currently, FASTSIGNS exists in nine countries including the United States, Canada, Chile, England, Grand Cayman, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Australia (where centers operate as SIGNWAVE®). In 2019, the brand is slated to open locations in two additional countries, including Malta and Spain.
As part of its aggressive franchise development plans, FASTSIGNS is targeting growth throughout the Northeast, particularly in urban, downtown markets as the demand for comprehensive signage and visual communications solutions continues to grow rapidly.
“FASTSIGNS’ business model is focused on providing custom marketing and graphics solutions for local businesses, so franchisees that operate centers in urban areas are well-positioned to serve the countless organizations right in their backyard,” said Mark Jameson, Executive Vice President of Franchise Support and Development. “Whether a new center, conversion, or co-brand, FASTSIGNS franchisees in these areas continue to experience strong sales and growth.”
Over the next few months, FASTSIGNS will open new centers in downtown Mineola/Westbury on Long Island and in White Plains, New York. In 2018, FASTSIGNS opened its first location in downtown Hartford, Connecticut, as well as additional centers in cities like East Brunswick, New Jersey; Patchogue, New York; and South Burlington, Vermont. The downtown Hartford location celebrated its Grand Opening on April 30.
“We are currently seeking qualified entrepreneurs to grow the brand in other urban areas throughout the Northeast,” said Jameson. “To name a few, we are eyeing New York City; Buffalo; Meriden, Danbury and Norwalk in Connecticut; Cranston and Providence, Rhode Island; Boston area and Holyoke, Massachusetts; Nashua, New Hampshire; and Portland, Maine, among others.”
Franchisee Shishir Mehta has owned and operated a FASTSIGNS center in Waltham, Massachusetts, for 17 years.
“When I was considering making the transition to be an entrepreneur, franchising made a lot of sense. There’s a proven model, so you’re set up for success,” said Mehta. “I loved FASTSIGNS because of its strong track record, and it was a similar B2B, relationship-focused environment I was used to from having worked in IT sales. I’ve always enjoyed helping customers, and with FASTSIGNS, there’s no limit to how big my business can become. We serve every industry, from foodservice and education to healthcare and finance. The product line is so deep that you can offer so many different solutions to the customer. It’s exciting.”
In addition to the Northeast expansion, FASTSIGNS is proactively targeting the recruitment of first responders and military veterans in an effort to offer a viable opportunity for these individuals to transition into entrepreneurship. Currently, over 12 percent of the total number of franchisees in the FASTSIGNS system are military veterans.
FASTSIGNS recognizes the courage and strength of military veterans and first responders and is dedicated to helping them find success and purpose through its franchise opportunities. While many veterans look forward to being reunited with their families and returning to a life outside of deployment, many also find themselves starting from scratch while having to build a successful career. Similarly, first responders often lead a strenuous career that takes a toll on both thier physical and mental well-being.
“It is our priority to ensure that our veterans and first responders have the opportunity and support to successfully prosper in a business within the franchising model.” said Jameson. “We pride ourselves on our strong network of franchisees and encourage all potential franchisees to connect with existing franchisees to validate the business opportunity.”
After 38 years as a first responder in the fire service and law enforcement departments, franchisee Russ Mason opened his first FASTSIGNS location in St. Peters, Missouri, in 2015.
“After being a first responder for 38 years, I was looking for a change that challenged me,” Mason explained. “Many first responders are very mechanically inclined and business-minded, and the FASTSIGNS business model is well suited for self-motivated and hands-on individuals. FASTSIGNS gives you the tools to be successful and supports its franchisees by giving you the best opportunity for successful growth. “
FASTSIGNS offers military veterans the most comprehensive support and financial incentives available in the signage industry. FASTSIGNS participates in the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) VetFran program that provides military veterans with special incentives and assistance to open a franchise. Veterans and first responders, including paramedics, emergency medical technicians, police officers, sheriffs, and firefighters can take advantage of FASTSIGNS’ 50-percent reduction on the franchise fee — a savings of $24,875
FASTSIGNS is known in the industry for equipping its franchisees with tools vital to securing the ongoing success of each individual location. In 2018, FASTSIGNS announced the launch of its partnership with 1HUDDLE, a workforce-training platform that converts unique training content into science-backed, quick-burst training games that are proven to accelerate workforce productivity.
For any existing business looking to expand into this fast-paced market, FASTSIGNS offers co-brand and conversion programs to help owners diversify their product lines and services to meet the growing demand for comprehensive signage and visual communications solutions. FASTSIGNS has helped countless owners of print shops, photography studios, camera stores, embroidery shops, and more, add a FASTSIGNS to their existing business or fully convert their store to a FASTSIGNS franchise. FASTSIGNS franchisees receive ongoing training and support to stay ahead of the competition and exceed the needs of their local business community. Both the co-brand franchise opportunity and conversion can be started with only $15,000 down on the initial franchise fee.