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Ted Laatz, President at SUCCESS Space
Ted Laatz holds a BS in Business Administration from Bradley University, an MBA with a dual emphasis in Entrepreneurship and Stategy, Execution & Valuation from DePaul University, and a Certificate in Franchise Management from Georgetown University.
He has been with eXp Holdings since 2020, and heavily involved in the real estate industry for over 20 years.
Follow SUCCESS Space on LinkedIn.
What You’ll Learn In This Episode
- About SUCCESS Space
- The core mission and values
This transcript is machine transcribed by Sonix
Intro: [00:00:07] Welcome to Franchise Marketing Radio. Brought to you by SeoSamba comprehensive high performing marketing solutions for mature and emerging franchise brands. To supercharge your franchise marketing, go to seosamba.com. That’s seosamba.com.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:31] Lee Kantor here another episode of Franchise Marketing Radio and this is going to be a good one. Today on the show we have Ted Laatz and he is with Success Space. Welcome, Ted.
Ted Laatz: [00:00:42] Hey, good morning, Lee. Thanks so much for having me.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:44] Well, I’m excited to learn what you’re up to. Tell us a little bit about Success Space. How are you serving folks?
Ted Laatz: [00:00:49] Yeah, most definitely so. Success. Spacex is a cafe coworking and coaching facility, and we’re doing things a little differently in terms of the coworking section, whereas most of the time a co-working facility that you would think of would be, let’s say, 15 or 20,000 square feet downtown, a major MSA. What we’ve decided in light of the new the new way people are working is to have the success space facilities be approximately 5000 to 6000 square feet in the suburbs, basically where people used to get on the highway to go downtown, the MSA. We we want to be in that area. We want to be in the strip mall where they’re getting their groceries and where they’re dropping off their laundry, dry cleaning and that type of thing. So we’re taking a little bit of different approach to to the coworking industry.
Lee Kantor: [00:01:54] Now, is this because of coming out of the pandemic? You think this is a better model or you think that’s an untapped area? I mean, historically co-working has been in, like you said, large metros and maybe taking up ten floors of a, you know, a huge building.
Ted Laatz: [00:02:10] Correct. Yeah. And so both to answer your question. Right. So number one, the way people are working is definitely different. Now you’re seeing a lot of that where people don’t want to go back to the office or just are not going back, they’re not being asked to come back. And so a lot more people are working out of their house. And they still need a spot, though, to go to to have calls like this or to get away from the dog that might be barking or focus, whatever it might be. And so we wanted to have a facility that’s very close to their home that they could go to to work now.
Lee Kantor: [00:02:48] So that means kind of the the ideal client or member is a little different than because some of those larger co-working spaces, they were targeting big companies that had maybe remote offices and they were using that as kind of the funding. And it was less about the entrepreneur that that individual business owner.
Ted Laatz: [00:03:09] Well, so for us it’s both right. So again, the the corporation might still have an office downtown. The MSA, they might ask might not be asking people to come in as much though. Right. You’re hearing some companies now taking a hybrid approach, come in for a couple of days, work from home for a few days again. Others go ahead and work from home full time. So it takes advantage of that situation and offers a solution to that situation. But conversely, you brought up entrepreneurs and we are focused on entrepreneurs as well. And that’s our our coaching program is very unique in that we have a coach on premise and that coach serves two purposes. So one is business development and business coaching, and that’s more along the lines of an entrepreneur and helping them grow their business. And then the other side is for that corporate employee executive that might need personal development coaching or something along those lines. So we’re definitely targeting both in our facilities.
Lee Kantor: [00:04:22] Is that coach the franchisee or is that a revenue stream for the franchisee?
Ted Laatz: [00:04:28] It’s a revenue stream for the franchisee and the actual coach could be the franchisee themselves or someone they hire.
Lee Kantor: [00:04:36] And then which that’s pretty innovative. I haven’t seen any other co-working spaces kind of go that way. What what spurred that?
Ted Laatz: [00:04:47] Well, our sister company is Success Enterprises. Success magazine been around for 125 years, a personal development magazine. And part of that company is coaching as well. And so we were able to tap into that piece that’s already existing and bring that into our facilities also.
Lee Kantor: [00:05:12] Now, at what stage are you as you’re an emerging franchise right now? Are there some up and running?
Ted Laatz: [00:05:19] We’re emerging right now. So we have sold nine franchise locations with expecting to sign another two or three here in the next couple of weeks. We have three facilities that are about to go under lease and so they should be completed in the next 90 to 120 days for our first openings.
Lee Kantor: [00:05:44] And what part of the country are they?
Ted Laatz: [00:05:49] Southeast mainly, but Texas. We have some in Texas, Louisiana, Alabama. So kind of that southeast area.
Lee Kantor: [00:05:59] Now, is the person opening these franchises? Are they kind of the professional franchise in that? This is a complementary brand to a portfolio that already exists or these first time franchisees.
Ted Laatz: [00:06:12] They are first time franchisees that tend to be entrepreneurs, tend to be focused on personal development and willing to to to join us in this exciting ride.
Lee Kantor: [00:06:28] So you so what came first, kind of the profile of this ideal franchisee or the concept and then finding people that were attracted to it?
Ted Laatz: [00:06:40] So our parent company is XP World Holdings. And so XP World Holdings actually has a little over 80,000 real estate agents now as part of that company, and it is a 100% remote company. They’ve been working out of the metaverse for since their inception in 2009. And so with that, they do not have any brick and mortar locations. But this is a nice complementary offering to XP World Holdings in that agents can utilize these spaces to work out of. So that’s what spurred the thought of, all right, this works well for agents, but it actually works really well for everybody else also, especially in light of COVID and everything that’s going on. And so it all kind of spawned out of that initial conversation.
Lee Kantor: [00:07:42] So then how did you get involved because of franchising background?
Ted Laatz: [00:07:48] A little bit of both. I tend to my background is starting and launching brands and so I’ve launched a national real estate franchise in my past, then been around franchising quite a bit, have a certificate franchise management from Georgetown. So, you know, franchising is in my history, but real estate is as well. And so I worked with XP World Holdings, launching a number of initiatives for them. And when this one came up, since I have the franchising background as well, I was tapped to do this also.
Lee Kantor: [00:08:30] It’s an interesting concept to leverage that success brand into the coworking space and then offer coaching. This is very unique and it’s it must be pretty exciting to go out there with that. Most new emerging franchises don’t have that in their back pocket.
Ted Laatz: [00:08:49] Exactly. I mean, to to have this iconic brand that’s been around for 125 years as our as our brand is definitely an exciting way to start.
Lee Kantor: [00:08:59] So now when you’re going to market with this, I mean, is just the success name enough to at least get people interested in this?
Ted Laatz: [00:09:07] Well, I think it’s both. I think it’s the success name, but I think it’s also the unique offering. Right. I mean, people are recognizing it that it really is an opportune offering for this time in history, you know, and to to have multiple revenue streams, you know, lower overhead with the the smaller square footage. I mean, I think it’s the the entire package that people are attracted to.
Lee Kantor: [00:09:37] So now in that space, how many actual offices are there?
Ted Laatz: [00:09:43] Well, sort of describe the space. The first 1500 square feet is our cafe area. And so that cafe here is a full service cafe. Someone someone early on said to me, you know, Starbucks is a co-working facility. They just do it one latte at a time. And that that really struck struck me and stayed with me. So that first 1500 square feet full service cafe, you could if you think of Starbucks or if you think of Panera or anything along those lines, that that first 1500 square feet will be comparable from there, you’ll walk back through some glass doors and and by the way, that cafe is open to the public. So it’s not a membership or anything along those lines. Anybody can come into the cafe, enjoy their coffee, sandwiches, whatever it might be. From there, you’ll walk through glass doors to the 3500 square foot co-working facility. And again, the coach will have a ten by ten office or so in there, and then the rest will all be the co-working offices. We’re designing them to be again in light of COVID and and just the change in work style altogether smaller offices, most of them will be either one person or two person offices down to a phone booth size that people can just come in and work all the way up to a two person office a little bit larger. And then another unique offering that we have is that we’ve designed a billing system that is by the minute rather than the typical facility that might do by the month. And so literally somebody could be come into the cafe, get a coffee, a pastry, whatever it might be, working in the cafe and decide, you know, I’d rather have a change of environment. I’d rather have a little quieter environment. I need to make a phone call, whatever it might be. And they can walk into the co-working facility and they can stay for five or 10 minutes or hours or days, whatever it is. But we have that unique offering in our billing system as well.
Lee Kantor: [00:11:57] Now, is it possible to have, you know, kind of a permanent, quote unquote, space where I know I’m going to this, I can leave stuff there? Or is everything just mentally so.
Ted Laatz: [00:12:07] Yeah. Most definitely. So we do we do offer the monthly as well, just like other facilities, you know, and we’re probably estimating maybe a third to a half might actually go that route, whereas the other, let’s say half or so might go the by minute route.
Lee Kantor: [00:12:28] Now, you also mentioned the metaverse. Is there kind of a virtual membership as well where I can have access to all of the success ecosystem wherever they are?
Ted Laatz: [00:12:39] There is. There is. And that’s really you know, I appreciate you bringing that up. That’s a whole other exciting aspect of this. So as I mentioned, our sister company, XP Realty, has been working out of the metaverse for since 2009 on a platform called Ver Bella and which is also owned by XP World Holdings. And so we’re able to tap into rubella as well and have a metaverse available for our clients. And so imagine, you know, you walk in to our co-working facility, you have someone somewhere else in the world that you’d like to communicate with. You can do so in our metaverse, meet them in our metaverse, you can have an office space in our metaverse. So it’s a it’s a whole nother layer to this that’s pretty exciting. You can almost think of it as the metaverse, the our platform being the hub with all of the coworking franchises, being the spokes.
Lee Kantor: [00:13:40] Now, as a member, do I have access to all of the success spaces wherever they are? Or is this something that I you know, I’m in wherever you said, like Dallas or City in Texas. So that’s my home base. And then if I’m traveling and there’s another one in, you know, Des Moines, I can go to Des Moines.
Ted Laatz: [00:13:59] Correct? You can.
Lee Kantor: [00:14:01] And is there additional fee or that I’m just in the club, so I get access?
Ted Laatz: [00:14:06] Well, there’ll be a membership fee, write a monthly membership fee and then again you can we build by the minute. Right. And so if you wanted to walk into that facility and use an office, you could work into that office by the minute. We do have kind of common area that you could just sit in if you wanted to do that. But if you’d like an actual office space, you know, again, our unique offering, you could do that by the minute.
Lee Kantor: [00:14:30] So it’s that by the minute really serves multiple purposes.
Ted Laatz: [00:14:35] It does. It does.
Lee Kantor: [00:14:38] So congratulations on all the success you mentioned. That you’re kind of clear on this ideal franchisee. Can you describe like, are they somebody from corporate America that just maybe is into their second act? Or is this somebody that you have to have restaurant experience because there is a café in the front? Like, what is the kind of profile?
Ted Laatz: [00:14:59] You don’t have to have a restaurant experience. We have a very robust LMS and team. We have multiple members on our team that are from the OR I’m sorry, the restaurant industry as well as we have members from the coworking industry, the coaching industry. So we’ve built a very robust team. They’re there to help our franchisee franchisees when they are on board with ongoing operation. But we also have I’m pretty proud of the LMS that we’ve put together that that really is there to help our franchisees. I would say that our LMS is comparable to any anyone out there for franchisees, franchises that have been around for much longer, obviously. So we’re here to support you ask about the profile, the profile we’re really looking for, and it could be someone’s second act coming out of corporate. But what we’re finding is that that entrepreneurial spirit is really important as long as well as that that personal development kind of understanding. Right. If you have both that entrepreneurial and personal development understanding, then you really believe in our model and and are able to go from there.
Lee Kantor: [00:16:19] But are you looking from a personality standpoint, somebody who is kind of a community builder because this is a space, a cafe space, which is, you know, kind of you need that. Ted Danson from Cheers. Right, to get that kind of community built. But also you need that person that’s going to help business people. You know, you’re you’re investing in them in terms of coaching. You’re saying, I’m going to help you become better and I’m going to help you grow your business and things like that. So it’s a really it takes a special person to kind of pull that off, I would think.
Ted Laatz: [00:16:52] Well, so two things there. The coaching, again, we have a coaching certification so the franchisee can hire a coach that kind of meets that profile and we’ll run them through a certification to help with that. And then we have a coach of the coaches that actually helps coach our coaches, provide them with monthly training that they can then pass along to their clients and things along those lines. For the the coach themselves, the franchisee, you’re absolutely right. That community builder is is ideal. I mean, somebody that can really go out and represent the brand in the community, let, again, both entrepreneurs and corporate employees know what’s there and available. And again, I think a lot of it will also be organic, right? Our cafe will be a very robust cafe competing at the highest level. And so I think, you know, from a marketing standpoint, that’s somewhat serves as a top of funnel in that people will organically come into the cafe and from there, see if you can picture glass doors that say welcome to success or this way to success in the towards the back. And that café will serve as an organic to the the coworking and coaching.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:22] Right but you need a relationship driven person. This isn’t a person that, you know, isn’t caring. They have to be kind of a servant leader type person that is caring about the community that wants them to do better and be better and to help.
Ted Laatz: [00:18:39] 100%, 100% agree. Right. You can’t have someone sitting behind a desk waiting for sure.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:44] Right. So they have to be immersed in the community and really have a heart of service.
Ted Laatz: [00:18:48] It’s 100%, you know, to give you an example. One of our franchisees very involved in their church. Their church happens to be located across the street from where they’re going to put their facility. You know, the church is excited that they’ll be able to utilize that facility as well for overflow, for their meetings, for their events. All of those different things. This person also very involved in the Chamber of Commerce. So to your point. Right, very, very immersed in that local community and excited to help grow it.
Lee Kantor: [00:19:29] Well, if somebody wants to learn more, have a more substantive conversation with you or somebody on the team what’s the website.
Ted Laatz: [00:19:36] Success franchise dot com we keep it simple success franchise dot.
Lee Kantor: [00:19:40] Com. Well Ted, congratulations on all the success. Thanks for coming on and sharing this story. You’re doing important work and we appreciate you.
Ted Laatz: [00:19:49] And I appreciate the opportunity to speak with you. Thank you so much.
Lee Kantor: [00:19:52] All right. This is Lee Kantor. We’ll see you next time on Franchise Marketing Radio.