Born in Iceland in 2002, Zocalo specializes in serving Mexican food and now wants to import its concept to France. Explanations with Frédéric Barrot, partner at Framboise Consulting, to whom the brand entrusted its development and the task of recruiting franchisors in France.
After Budji and Pokawa, which diversified into street food, it was the turn of the Mexican restaurant concept Zócalo, whose name refers to Mexico City’s central square, to land in France. This is imminent! Founded in Denmark and Sweden, Einar Örn Einarsson and partner Joachim Kilman’s label has been open since 2016 and is now targeting French soil to increase its notoriety.
It all started with a trip to the United States about twenty years ago. The banner was created by two students, originally from Iceland, who came back fond of Mexican food there. And then I decided to open a restaurant in Iceland. Since then, the brand, launched in 2002, has become present with 25 restaurants spread across Iceland (8 units in Reykjavík), Sweden and Denmark.“And explains Frederic Barrot, partner at Framboise Consulting, within its international subsidiary Raspberry Consulting, to whom the founder has entrusted the development of the brand in France.
The goal of the network? I take place in all student cities in France to introduce all kinds of burritos (on a plate or in a pie), nachos, healthy salads, tacos and quesadillas * accompanied by Mexican cocktails. At the same time, it has already signed a major franchise contract with a partner in England.
From 12 to 20 franchises in France by 2025
“Framboise Consulting has been working with Zócalo’s management for almost 9 months to help it find partners, but also to adapt its economic model to French regulations. The goal for it is either to find a master franchisee to develop the brand in France, or direct franchisees with the ambition to open Between 1 and 5 points of sale under the brand.Zócalo has no plans to open a pilot site or sub-sites.Specifically to start the franchise more quickly“And Frederic Barrow continues. Thus Zócalo should soon be deployed in student cities to target young people and city dwellers, such as Toulouse, Bordeaux, Nantes, Paris, Lille and Montpellier. But also Lyon, Nice and Marseille.” With an opening in mind From 12 to 20 points of sale by 2025“ And ambition to open “Between 1 and 4 points of sale per year in formats ranging from 12 to a maximum of 120 square meters depending on the location, whether it is a food court or a space in the city center.“
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As a result, the management of the network will surround itself with candidates who are already entrepreneurs at heart and who will have to know their area well in order to increase the brand’s reputation. Profiles should also have a sense of connection and being present An affinity for the concept and its products“, Frederic Barrow continues. Finally, he must be able to lead a team From 1 to 6 people depending on peak times. The person in charge of the cash register may actually be asked to prepare dishes in the kitchen during peak hours.“, determines the latter. Note that the brand offers both on-site catering and quick sales (with ordering stations). products come from its center Purchase located in Germany To allow the future manager of the restaurant to invest in an assembly kitchen (without having to install an extractor hood in his premises). Soon, says Frederick Barrow, This platform, which currently serves franchisees in Northern Europe, will be able to deliver to France. Or expand with a hub in France depending on the evolution of network size and needs.“.
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Concept with an investment of 200,000 euros
Note that to join the brand, which is already recruiting partners on its site and through Framboise Consulting, it will be necessary to have a global contribution from 200,000 euros Including the €20,000 entry fee (music playlist included). The latter recommends a personal contribution of between 50,000 and 60,000 euros to secure your project with the banks. Regarding Yields up to 6%, to which an additional 2% relates to marketing and brand communication. Once launched, the consultant asserts, the franchisor can hope to achieve “A turnover of 600,000 to 700,000 Euros from the first year with a growth rate of 20% per annum.”
*Corn cake with cheese
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