Franchise Canada May/June 2024 Issue
Company ProfilesFranchises Across CanadaMay/June 2024Previous IssuesWomen in FranchisingWomen in Franchising Article

Taking Care of Business

Trendy treatments take centre stage in three franchise brands’ à la carte offerings

By Georgie Binks

Self-care is the term du jour for salons, spas, and the R&R activities that promote physical, mental, and emotional health, and these brands are emerging as ones to look out for when it comes to having their finger on the pulse of cutting-edge services.

iCRYO Canada

Just imagine—you’re considering a franchise with iCRYO, which offers a host of cool, innovative treatments, and then out of seemingly nowhere, you receive the ticket of a lifetime. “We have a discovery day [where] we invite potential franchisees to visit us and try the different services,” enthuses Phil Defoy, CEO of iCRYO Canada. “Everyone absolutely loves them!”

Defoy, the master franchisor of iCRYO in Canada, says the brand offers something for everyone. “With the lifestyle services, we have full-body cryotherapy (cold therapy), red-light therapy, compression therapy, zerobody dry float, and infrared sauna.”

He notes that some benefits the consumer can see and feel are the reduction of pain, anti-aging, improved recovery, and reduction of oxidative stress, a condition in which the levels of antioxidants in the body are low and free radicals (which can contribute to chronic health problems) are too high. They have also been shown to improve sleep and energy. “These services are usually offered one-by-one by some other businesses, but iCRYO offers them all under one roof,” explains Defoy about its unique value proposition.

iCRYO provides three types of services: lifestyle, body sculpting, and a medical division for intravenous and intramuscular injections, utilizing mostly vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. The injections are administered by a registered nurse, with a pharmacy preparing the compounds and doctors overseeing the practice.

Right now, the franchise has just one Canadian location in Brossard, Quebec, which is owned by Defoy. iCRYO originated in the U.S., where it has 40 locations open, 40 under construction, and another 150 at various stages of development. Defoy says it’s “booming.”

Defoy plans to open two more corporate locations in 2024 in Quebec and is looking to franchise across the country: he’s in discussions with interested parties in Ontario, B.C., Alberta, and Manitoba.

The ideal franchisee would have an interest in optimizing health, anti-aging, and recovery, as well as a background in management or business. Defoy says, “We’re looking for quality people with an interest in health and wellness.”

iCRYO offers significant training, and Defoy notes the benefits of owning a franchise are financial freedom, flexibility, and being part of an up-and-coming, successful industry, in addition to its proven record. “We have a recipe book that’s provided, but it’s up to the franchisee to follow the recipe,” he explains.

The biggest challenge is that the industry is relatively new, so Defoy’s job is educating the public about the brand and its product and services. He says, “Once people are sold on the services, a large number are searching for [them]. It’s a very trendy, fast-growing industry.”

Laser Clinics Canada

“We’ve been in the confidence business since 2008,” says Susie Dantas, the franchisee of Laser Clinics Canada at Square One Shopping Centre in Mississauga, Ontario. “Our external beauty solutions help our clients reignite their inner confidence.”

The trends the franchise is seeing are safe treatments for all skin types; a focus on the skin’s underlying health; a new appetite for achieving strong, resilient, glowing skin; and what the franchise calls “skinimalism”—quicker, more efficient, and more affordable regimens.

In February 2024, the franchise launched three exciting new treatments: HydraFacial Platinum featuring JLo Beauty Booster, SKINVIVE by JUVÉDERM, and Hydrojelly™ Advanced Facials.

It’s important for the company’s franchisees to frame the benefits of these treatments authentically, Dantas says. “I help [franchisee] prospects by sharing my experience and offering advice. The process can feel daunting, and having someone to run things by often puts prospects at ease. I’ve also supported corporate by doing a franchisee profile video and have been part of franchise panels to help share my experience for those who are curious about the brand.”

That help extends further than just fellow franchisees, too. The brand is very active in the Mississauga community through the Run the World Summit, a female-founded and run organization that supports female-identifying entrepreneurs in the community.

For those interested in the franchise, Dantas says the biggest asset is a passion for beauty and for people. “It’s a point of connection with both clients and your team of medical aestheticians who love what they do. The rest you’ll learn and be trained as you go.” A business background is also helpful.

Dantas says launching her business was the pinnacle of several months of planning and scenario building. “The day of my ribbon cutting at Square One was one I will always remember, surrounded by my family and my new LCC team,” she recalls. “Since then, I’ve learned the ins and outs of managing the business day-to-day with the support of our corporate team. I’m now looking to grow and become a multi-unit franchisee.”

Dantas’ advice for prospective franchisees? Don’t be afraid to take the plunge. “If you’re passionate about beauty and people, then reach out and start your business plan. It will give you the confidence to make the right move for you.”

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Massage Addict

Caroline Kolompar, chief executive officer of Massage Addict, lists enjoying a massage and reflexology therapy as her favourite self-care treatments. When asked why reflexology, she notes that she “loves the pressure point focus on my feet. It both feels good and gives a renewed sense of energy.”

Kolompar also loves that wonderful feeling of knowing that at Massage Addict clinics across the country, Canadian customers are welcomed with a friendly smile and an assurance of quality care. “The brand’s value proposition is to be the go-to for therapeutic treatments across Canada, a place where clients receive high-quality therapeutic treatments coupled with exceptional in-clinic experience,” she explains.

Massage Addict was founded in 2008 in Nova Scotia and is 100 per cent Canadian-owned and operated. With 118 locations across all provinces and more than 1,600 practicing therapists across the country, there are plans to open even more Canadian locations.

“We’ve seen growth in terms of the variety of treatments that clients are seeking to help with their pain management, stress, and anxiety,” says Kolompar. “To that end, along with massage therapy, our clinics provide chiropractic care, acupuncture, and reflexology, allowing clients the flexibility and ease of being able to take advantage of one or more types of treatments to help their symptoms or conditions—all under one roof.”

Massage Addict offers memberships with preferred pricing, although non-members are welcome to use their services.

Regarding the support it offers its franchisees, Kolompar points to the brand’s size and history. “The franchise has an incredibly robust cross-functional support team with more than 130 years of combined experience to help guide and nurture franchise partners from pre-opening through post-opening,” she says.

Massage Addict’s franchisee training plan incorporates a multitude of topics including, but not limited to, a review of regulatory guidance for each therapeutic service, the client experience, operational and marketing training, and creating a strong in-clinic culture. The franchise is also a proud long-term partner of the Arthritis Society Canada.

Kolompar says there are three qualities that a prospective franchisee should have. “Being a hands-on owner committed to creating a positive clinic; having a passion for customer satisfaction, health, and wellness; [wanting to help] people; and participating actively in the local business community.”

To those considering becoming a franchisee, whether with Massage Addict or elsewhere, Kolompar has this advice: “Do lots of research. Make sure that the industry you are looking into is not only a growing industry, but more specifically that it’s right for you. When you love what you do, success follows.”

And that’s a pretty good feeling.