Young Entrepreneur exits corporate maze, seizes opportunity with College Hunks
Former sales and marketing representative takes the College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving plunge
Andy Garcia is typical of your average College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving franchisee: highly motivated to succeed and willing to roll up his sleeves to get the job done. When Garcia found out about the College Hunks junk hauling franchise, he jumped at the chance to join the team. We recently sat down with him to talk about his journey with us so far.
What were you doing before College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving?
Before College Hunks, I worked for a variety of different companies in the sales and marketing realm. I worked for a few technology-based startups in New York City. That was fun and there were some definite perks there. I got to see how entrepreneurial-spirited companies operate. It gave me a really good basis for what I would do if I had my own company and even things I wouldn’t do. I won’t lie, prior to this I found it hard to find my place in the corporate world and bounced around a little bit. All that bouncing around was really tough while it was happening, but it was kind of a blessing at the same time because I got to learn so many different methods of how to run a business and how to operate. It gave me a lot of different perspectives.
You said you saw things that you liked and didn’t like in other companies. What was it about College Hunks that attracted you?
It started way back, during the first season of Shark Tank, which I’m a big fanatic of. I saw them on that very first season of Shark Tank, and I was like, “Man. That’s kind of a cool, quirky concept.” They took an industry that’s filled with mediocrity and fly-by-night companies and turned it into something that was fun, engaging, catchy, but still professional. Doing business with integrity is really important to me. It’s a values-based organization. I’m sure you’ve heard it before, but “Hunks” stands for honesty, uniformed, nice, knowledgeable, service. It’s more of a play on words.
For me, branding is hugely important, especially coming from a sales and marketing background. Without the brand, you can have the best employees, you can have the best service, you can have the best whatever it is, but if your brand isn’t up to snuff, it’s never going to happen. Really, the brand is what stuck out.
Throughout our research on College Hunks over the past few months and years, we’ve never seen anything portraying them in a negative light. Everything exudes positivity, growth and integrity. Those are really important things for me.
What are your long-term goals for the company? Are you looking forward to owning more locations?
Yeah. Absolutely! We’re definitely looking to expand geographically to cover the entire northern New Jersey territory. We’re on a good path to that. We do have about six zones in northern New Jersey that we own, so they’re pretty big slots of land.
Are you servicing them all right now or is that coming down the line?
That’s where we’re getting to. There’s a lot of low-hanging fruit that’s not being picked right now. We’re looking to build this into a several-million-dollars-a-year business.
As you know, New Jersey is a very different animal. There’s a lot more opportunity here in the sense that household incomes are high and population density is the highest in the nation. We have the greatest population density per square mile. There’s a lot more area to capitalize on.
The goal is two offices, six or seven million in revenue over all the territories and probably 40-50 employees. It’s a lofty goal, but I think it’s an attainable goal in the time frame that we set out.
What was attractive about joining a franchise, as opposed to starting from scratch with your own start up operation?
When we entertained the idea of getting involved with College Hunks, I’ve always had more of an acquire-and-build mentality as opposed to starting from scratch. It gives you more control and leverage, but, for me, joining a franchise that already has a proven reputation that we could build off of was key. Also, there’s a value to people knowing your brand because this company had been around for years.
We saw that as a launch pad for our future growth because we have so many ideas and so many things that we’re going to do to grow this business.
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