Dogtopia®, a leading U.S. dog daycare and spa franchise, announced plans for its first international expansion in Canada. The company is now seeking regional developers to open locations throughout the country, with an initial focus in British Columbia and Alberta.
“Dogtopia is a strong, well-established business in the U.S. with tremendous international growth potential, as pet spending in Canada alone is estimated to top $8.9 billion according to the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council of Canada,” said Amy Nichols, chief executive officer of Dogtopia. “We are now seeking entrepreneurs to help expand our footprint and serve as local representatives for the brand, ultimately positioning Dogtopia as the leading dog daycare and spa franchise in North America.”
Since Dogtopia launched in 2002, it has grown to 22 franchise locations and four company-owned locations in the U.S., in addition to six locations in development. The company recently entered into a strategic partnership with Thomas Franchise Solutions, Ltd. (TFS), an investment firm dedicated to guiding and growing select unique franchise concepts. With the partnership, Dogtopia plans to expand its brand to more than 400 locations across the U.S. and Canada over the next seven years.
“Dogtopia’s year-over-year growth has proven that consumers want to find a safe, friendly, and fun environment for their dogs while they are away, either just for the day or while traveling,” said Peter H. Thomas, chairman and CEO of Thomas Franchise Solutions, Ltd. “With the help of qualified regional developers, we plan to develop locations throughout Canada and look forward to providing more families with an exceptional dog daycare experience.”
To support Dogtopia’s development in Canada, the company has partnered with BLJC Orange Retail Real Estate Solutions to provide a comprehensive, standardized and managed site selection and real estate process to maximize regional developers’ potential and decrease the time to open. BLJC Orange is Canada’s premier tenant-focused consulting and real estate firm, representing dozens of leading Canadian and international retailers in real estate transactions all across Canada.
Dogtopia also engaged Environics Analytics, the leading marketing and analytical services company in Canada, to conduct a comprehensive market study identifying the ideal locations in cities across Canada where the most consumers receptive to Dogtopia can be found. Environics Analytics specializes in demographic, segmentation, consumer insights, site modeling and custom analytics for over 200 clients, and this project involved custom analytics to evaluate potential across Canada.
Candidates should have the skills to grow a successful business within a proven franchise model and an affinity for dogs. Regional developers will be required to open at least one store within the first year of signing to serve as a showcase for their region, then develop additional stores during a scheduled development period, either by opening and operating more units themselves or by recruiting franchisees. Regional developers will earn half of the initial franchise fee for each unit license they sell, plus three percent of the ongoing revenue from each franchisee’s location.
Dogtopia was founded by CEO Amy Nichols to provide exceptional dog daycare, boarding and spa services. Within two years of operation, its first location grossed more than $1 million, and in 2005 the company began franchising throughout the U.S. Dogtopia’s design mirrors that of a chic, upscale spa. Laid out in a similar manner to a children’s daycare facility, Dogtopia has multiple playrooms to suit every dog’s personality and size. In addition to daycare and boarding, it also offers a spa, a self-service dog wash, and a boutique to pamper dogs of all shapes and sizes.