Tell us a little about the story of Lone Star + Joe's Garage
We started with a single Lone Star Restaurant in Manchester Street in Christchurch way back in 1987. There was no grand plan just a number of our family who wanted to put together a great restaurant that incorporated our love for country music and everything that surrounds it.
The first two restaurants in Christchurch and Queenstown were such a resounding success that we’ve been working hard to find great people to open their own Lone Star restaurants ever since.
Joe’s Garage came along in the early 2000’s. It was a fabulous existing cafe started by some great people. When they wanted to exit they approached us and we have been rolling out Joe’s Garage cafes around the country for the last 15 years.
What do you like to think separates you from other large hospitality franchise groups?
I think it really comes down to the values which we have had for our customers since day one, which is to treat every single one of them with love, care and generosity.
Of course we work very hard at the look and feel of our outlets and making sure the atmosphere is always high energy, the people that are looking after you are genuine and the food and beverage offering is great quality, but what really separates us is the feel we hope a customer gets that is driven from our franchisees love, care and generosity for everyone that comes through their doors.
As New Zealand's Biggest Hospitality Franchise What Were You Looking To Improve When You Implemented Loaded?
As a Franchisor you really have two key motivations. You want to be able to closely monitor and drive sales performance right across all of your venues and you want to ensure that your franchisees are financially successful and living a life that means they will be in the business for the long term.
We saw pretty quickly when trialing Loaded that all of our head office team, from shareholders and directors through to the accounts and payroll team had much simpler access to he key information. Because everyone was looking and talking about the same information we very quickly became more efficient.
For our franchisees it obviously takes a while for the to adopt a new system and to get all of their rostering, timeclocks and stock management up and running, but those that engaged have seen really great results and consistency in their operations and their financial results.
What's in store for Lone Star and Joe's going forward?
It’s obviously been a pretty strange year or so, but we’ve been delighted with how well our venues have been performing in a really difficult time for the hospitality industry in general.
The future will be much like the past, we’ll keep looking for great people and great locations where we can open new outlets and continue to serve up our favourite recipe of love, care and generosity.