How long have you been an owner of Any Lab Test Now?
We took ownership on March 1st, 2012.
How many locations do you own? Which ones?
We own two: Nashville, TN and Franklin, TN. We are the third owner of the Franklin store, and the second owner of the Nashville store.
Why did you buy an Any Lab Test Now?
It’s an interesting story. I had a career in advertising for 20 years. I ran an internet mailer catalog company for 17 years, and that company was sold and moved to Colorado, so I found myself without a job. I took some time off and started looking around for another management position, but I couldn’t find anything. Because I couldn’t find anything, my wife Hilda and I decided we should buy a business. We talked to a broker, and he presented around 12 different franchise concepts, everything from a quick print sign place to non-medical nursing care for seniors. When I looked at those businesses nothing really struck me as something I could sink my teeth into. My wife was visiting a friend and met Glory Gallucci (owner of the Raleigh and Durham locations.) She heard she was an Any Lab Test Now franchisee and became interested.
We went to Atlanta for Discovery Day, which is the presentation on franchising with Any Lab Test Now. When we saw the presentation, we thought this was something we could really do.
Driving back to Nashville from Atlanta we kept talking about the possibility of buying. The concern was the territories in Nashville that were available. They were areas of town that we didn’t feel would be suitable for sales. So, we got in touch with the owners of the two locations that already existed, and they were interested in selling to us. I looked at it closer, and started looking at their financials. They were profitable but weren’t making a lot of money. I felt confident that if we hustled and worked hard we could turn them around.
What’s your medical background? If no medical background, what is your background?
Hilda’s background is in nursing. My background has been marketing and operations/management. My degree was in painting, I was an art major. I have absolutely no medical training. You don’t have to have a medical background, but if you don’t you have to have staff that does.
What stood out to you about Any Lab Test Now compared to other franchises?
We just felt more comfortable, we were impressed when we went to Atlanta for Discovery Day. We thought it was a good fit, and it had a number of different aspects to it. There was the clinical part, there was the drug part, there was the DNA part. There are different areas of business that you could pursue. We kept talking to other franchisees as well. I tried to do a lot of due diligence and asked questions on how they were doing, and what they thought of the operations. Every other business had a downside to it except Any Lab Test Now.
What are the perks to owning an Any Lab Test Now?
Free lab tests! Free B12 shots! It’s been a great business, and it’s an interesting business. Also, everyone is paying with cash or card so you don’t have to worry about checks bouncing. You also don’t have to deal with insurance claims.
How involved are you in the day-to-day operations?
I’m pretty involved, I come into the office five days a week, but I rarely come in on Saturdays. I probably don’t come into work most days until 11 a.m., and I usually go home at 4:30 p.m. or 5 p.m. We have an office manager who is great. She worked with the previous owner so she’s been at it longer than us. She is very smart and has a whole lot of experience. She oversees both stores. Hilda works everyday as well, but she’s able to do most of the work she does from home. She’s usually in one of the stores 2 – 3 times a week.
What are the challenges you face as a business owner? How did you overcome this?
The biggest challenge I had was learning QuickBooks, and I’m still learning. Other issues that come up is also personnel. Our staff are medical assistants, which is the lowest level of certification in the medical field. You’re dealing with educated individuals, but it’s a very short process to become a medical assistant as opposed to a nurse or someone with a 4-year degree. On the positive side, It’s been just wonderful watching the two stores grow. It’s rewarding for us. It’s always fun to see how you’re doing compared to the other stores.
What is the support like from corporate?
I think it’s great, they have a good team. There’s someone for every issue you might have. With my challenges in QuickBooks, I have a dedicated FSR who is always there to help me. She has single-handedly trained me in QuickBooks. think corporate does a good job of finding collection partners. I think marketing has done well. Corporate has been good at giving us info and advice in how we can improve our business. I just can’t say enough about the Any Lab Test Now corporate team.
How is managing personal life while operating an Any Lab Test Now?
It works for me. It’s kind of a nice retirement business. I get up about 8 a.m. and have breakfast, and I take my dog on a 3 mile walk. We’re able to travel. We’re able to be gone and work from home. We’ve also established great friendships with other franchisees.
What’s your success story?
Follow the statistics. You have to look at every statistic you can to know what the business is doing. Statistics tell you where your profit and volume is coming from. Make sure you have enough money budgeted in pay per click. In my personal opinion, the number one thing for our success is customer service and pay per click. Google is our friend!