Tropical Smoothie Cafe holds a semi-annual conference for their franchisees to celebrate their accomplishments and recognize outstanding leadership. It was at the 2016 conference that Nick Crouch was named Franchisee of the Year. Nick not only has shown impressive business skills, but also shows great support for his teams and community.
Born in Columbia, Missouri, Nick Crouch was involved in the restaurant business since he was 16. Managing numerous concepts through college, he transitioned into the golf industry after graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Business. At 25, he decided to go into business for himself and set his sights on franchising.
“Franchising is very powerful. Following and duplicating a great brand model seemed like a good way to build an empire. It’s all about execution and building a great team,” Crouch said.
After researching what he described as, “almost every brand out there,” he decided to franchise with Tropical Smoothie Cafe. Not only did the model seem fairly simple with no fryers or grills, but the concept stood out as unique in the typically crowded and competitive fast-casual space. After he ate in a Cafe, he was hooked and acquired that same Cafe less than two months later.
As a sole franchisee, Crouch was looking for a brand he could grow with. After opening his first Cafe in March 2012, he was able to use cash flow from that location to purchase a second location. And, then a third… and fourth. Now, he owns a total of nine locations throughout Florida and Georgia. Being a Tropical Smoothie Cafe franchisee has allowed him to pair his business acumen with a proven brand that creates new, healthier menu items, compelling unit economics, and robust national marketing programs.
“They provide innovative systems, easy-to-duplicate operations, and smart strategies for building a great team. If you take advantage of all the company offers, success becomes very achievable” Crouch commented about the model Tropical Smoothie has made for its franchisees.
Nick also stands out for his leadership within his stores and the community. He goes above and beyond for his employees. One Tropical Smoothie teammate recalls, “I was in a Cafe with Nick when one of his employees called and said their car had broken down in a bad part of town. Nick realized our work could wait and he immediately went to pick up the employee.”
He’s a large supporter of the charitable efforts that Tropical Smoothie Cafe is involved in. He is regularly in the top franchisees who contribute to raising funds for Camp Sunshine, Tropical Smoothie’s charity partner, and he donates to other local opportunities to help promote the brand and the brand’s values even further into the community.
Congratulations to Nick Crouch and his family on the incredible milestone of being named Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s Franchisee of the Year. His continued hard work, success, and dedication to the brand are greatly recognized within.