SPORT CLIPS Franchisee: Failed Owners Have Themselves to Blame

Not ALL the recent comments about the Sport Clips franchise have been negative.

One commenter, who claims to be an experienced franchise owner with three decades of experience, claims that Sport Clips is a great business model and that every one of the franchisee’s stores has been profitable.

According to the Worksforus, “operated PROPERLY, this concept is an easy winner.”  He/She states “Most people that fail need to look in the mirror and stop blaming others for their lack of business success.”

SportClipsThu 11/12/2009 11:17 AM  Worksforus wrote:

We are happy with our Sport Clips stores and wish we had gotten into the business sooner. We don’t agree with everything that happens at Corporate but it’s unrealistic to expect otherwise. No one gets along or agrees 100% of the time.

We’ve been involved with different franchises for nearly 30 years and find Sport Clips to be a great business model. We have yet to have a store not make money. Nothing is fool proof but operated PROPERLY, this concept is an easy winner.

Most people that fail need to look in the mirror and stop blaming others for their lack of business success. The tone of some of these commentors gives great insight into why they may have failed.

Of course, the lone positive comment of the month prompted a quick rebuttal.  Sat 11/14/2009 10:23 AM  Doesn’t Work for LOTS of people wrote:

You write: “We have yet to have a store not make money.”

What state are you in?

Have you talked to franchisees in Calif or any of the states in the south, whether it be Louisiana, Georgia, Florida?  The store average for the 140+ states in the southeast is barely $4,000 a week, for both service and retail.  These people are not making money.

You write: “Nothing is fool proof but operated PROPERLY, this concept is an easy winner.”

Are you aware of the corporate store in Jacksonville, Fla?  I have informatrion from a franchisee down there that this store has been opertaing as a corporate store for two years.  Surely SC is operating their own store properly?  After two years that store is averaging $3,300 and 230 customers?  Do you consider that a winner?

You write:  “The tone of some of these commentors gives great insight into why they may have failed.”

I followed the advice of some of these commentors and called lots and lots of former owners.  What I heard makes me think that you have it backwards.  The tone reflects not why they failed, but the fact that they were bullied by the franchisor, that they lost their life savings, and that the system fails many times in spite of how hard they worked.




SPORT CLIPS Boasts Strong Franchise Rankings

SPORTS CLIPS: A Great Franchise? Read Recent Comments.

64 thoughts on “SPORT CLIPS Franchisee: Failed Owners Have Themselves to Blame

  • Will Might

    Former TL that bought into a MUDA that was never executed. I lost plenty of $$$ and would be interested in joing the Class Action Suit. There are several other former TL’s in the Mitten state that got taken on the Sport Clips Nightmare ride as well. Will might at yahoo to contact.

  • Deanna Ladd

    As an experienced stylist, coming from a high-end salon, who needed a job quickly in a slow economy after an unexpected move, SC has been a blessing. I think it’s what you make of it.

    I could have been bitter about the environment, and the way they run their business, but, I must remember that this is their business, and their mission. If your mission and purpose does not line up with SC’s, then unprofitable business, and lack of interest would be in your future.

    OK, so if you don’t agree with the SC’s mission, systems and marketing, then move on, as some of you have. But take what you can from the experience and learn from it. Not one business is perfect with it’s method’s. Not mine, not yours, and not theirs. So if we can simply learn to mind our own business, we as individuals may succeed greater.

    As for a particular SC store operating inappropriately, remember, it is a FRANCHISE. This would be fault of the BUYER or owner of the franchise. However, SC as a company, should be overseeing that their name is protected.

    I can see how the systems of this business can set up future success, even in a struggling America. Yea, maybe some of the marketing strategies do not appeal to every single male walking the earth, but it works for our store and location. Money follows systems and management. If both are executed properly, you will reap what you sow, and you may have a turn of heart.

    You can never please everybody, and if you have a few haters, your probably in a good spot.

  • I was a SportClips Franchisee
    In a little over 1 year from opening I filed banckruptsy. I sold everything I had to try and keep the payroll going. I followed all corporates ideas and lost everything. This is a disaster. Please don’t buy a franchise. I had to pay for aminimum of 3 licences to open one. They don’t help you at all. I wish I had never heard of them.

  • Bill Spencer

    I just finished reading all the comments as a prospective franchisee who is doing their due diligence and I want to say thanks. I have also read comments from other websites as well and as you might imagine most are very negative towards SC. I can fully appreciate and understand the bitterness that comes with losing ones life savings, 401k, etc. My concern is that the comments are relatively old. Why is that? Is there a pending lawsuit? Did the economy start to improve and people are too busy to comment. Has SC improved as a franchisor? Nobody cares anymore? Your comments and thoughts on the subject are critical to my decision….

  • SC manager

    I have been managing at Sport clips for over four years now. If you put in your time, learn the system and get a stable team this is key to a successful business. Location is your number one factor to making money. I recommend following the system as they ask and hold people accountable as well as your self. If you don’t care about your business neither will your employees. I have seen time and time again owners not putting in the time that is needed to get these stores off the ground. You will need to put in more than 5 hours a week. The way to a stylist is very different than any other employee…we are a different breed. Take the time to learn what makes them tick…hire smart! I take much pride in making my store a success and so should you! Meet with your manager weekly and be available at ALL times. If you want to be successful you are going to have to do it your self. NO ONE will do it for you. Dropping 250K isn’t going to make you instant money without doing something to get it! I wish you luck as I completely believe is this franchise and everything it has to offer. I look forward to owning my own someday and wish you all the best!

  • Larry Kulchawik

    Re: Sport Clips- Vernon Hill, IL

    After one year (10 visits) I make the following comments:
    1. Stylists could care less about sports. I love sports and the reason I came.
    2. Stylists quietly go about their business as if they hate their jobs. No discussions with people and uninterested. Hardly a discussion amoung themselves- hate their jobs?
    3. Why cut hair then shampoo? After shampoo they quickly attempt to dry, but always leave part wet and uncombed.
    4. Several times i asked about hair products- they make no attempt to sell.
    5. Things I like- Watching sports in spite of uninterested stylists- short wait without an appointment. I now am looking at other place to get a haircut where I feel more welcome. Guess I’m getting what I pay for.

  • Am looking to become a franchisee in California. Can anyone give me some information as to how they are doing at either owning or working for a SC in California. It seems that there is alot given away for “free”, so do SC stores really make any money?

  • Todd A. Peterson


    The Sports Clips F.D.D. can be found at the link below. After reading the F.D.D. I strongly urge you to consider opening up YOUR OWN sports clip under a different name. Although the lure of an established name sounds great your F.D.D. is made for the franchisor to CONTROL you. The are partnered with the International Franchise Association which promotes franchisors protection at the expense of the franchisee. The FTC is the governing authority in franchising and after filing a complaint and demanding that someone investigate the fraud imposed by my franchisor (Matco Tools) I was told that their had to be MULTIPLE similar complaints before they could ACT.

    Imagine being sodomized by one attacker and being told by our government that there has to be multiple victims before the government could act. Sounds absurd doesn’t it.

    You really need to watch the article I had posted on Freedom Outpost to understand the full length of what it is like to fight a franchisor AFTER they commit CRIMINAL ACTS against your franchise.

    The link is below and I hope it helps make you understand.

    Franchise Disclosure Document for Sports Clip.

    Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on DOWNLOAD!

  • Mike Rainmaker

    Ok, here is the problem with SC. I am a customer and also a marketing consultant for over 18 years since I was 24 years old. SC does no database marketing, so there is no real incentive to come back in the future. Yes its true they cut your hair then shampoo and its a little ridiculous but the MVP is truly awesome it just should be done first.

    What corporate should do for its franchisees is look into customer repeat marketing and cross selling in a nice way. There should also be a referral program in place that has a gift of one free hair cut. They don’t understand the lifetime value of a customer at all.

    I dont think based on the comments and my personal experience with them that this is a good franchise to buy. My advice for stylists that want to open their own salon is go look into Jay Abraham and do your own salon and your own marketing, you can hire an E Myth consultant at about $50,000 for a year and now you have your own store that you don’t have to work in, and you save the 6.5%

    The 6.5% is a hassle fee because you don’t want to take the hassle/time to learn how to run a business, read the E Myth and read Jay Abraham.

    FYI : I earn about $500/hr in consulting so you are getting this advice from an expert in client acquistion, retention and multiplication (referral chains).

  • I am a stylist at a sport clips and I have loved the franchise but a lot of what makes your stylist happy comes down to the owner. Your first 5 years you are going to spend more time at your location because you need to open 3 stores within 5 years and you also have to make sure that stylist and managers are doing their jobs and everything product wise is stocked. If products aren’t stocked then we can’t sell them which won’t make you or I money. You also need to pay your staff correctly. You can’t hire a new person and pay them 13 dollars an hour while you still have one of your original stylist at 11 dollars an hour. We also must have all cleaning supplies, paper, ink, ect. Ready to go at all times so you either need to have a manager you can reimburse for charges or you have to come bring it in. Location is key. Convince is key.

    There is no reason for stylist or managers to ever be rude to a customer nor should they not be talking about products. Shampoos are done last because our clippers have to cut dry hair. And it also will get all the loose hair off of you that will make you itchy later.

  • Ben Riley

    Is it mandatory to open at least 3 franchises? I would hope to own only one. Thanks.

  • “….We’ve been involved with different franchises for nearly 30 years..”????
    Really? Oddly the details are missing…..the rest of it is well written. Hmmm…

    Red flag, you not but buying a couple of season passes for a few years to Bush Gardens here, then decide to “invest” in another theme park, franchises are expensive things, not easy to unload. If it was making money why would you, even successful ones can have lean years at the start to recoup the large startup investment, especially Sports Clips with its 3 store rule deadline, ouch. Many franchises have clauses in them prohibiting involvement in “other franchises” while involved with theirs, another little gotta you to look out for. I know someone in the ice cream franchise that got burned on that.

    But I digress, this review where the quote above came from smells like a plant from corporate. The wording seems oddly choosen, like it has be overly polished. Read it, it is like a glossy company pamphlet, or a news release.

    Hey, I have had 200 jobs over the last 30 years, cough…

    The whole Sport Clips concept seems to go against the grain on how to run a barber shop. Here is how I get my haircut, having it washed and wet first is mandatory, my hair is cut against a mirrored wall. Why? The mirror is for the stylist so they can see, judge, what they are doing, there are no TVs, no sports, you have to be able to be moved in the chair. If you cannot go without be entertained for 20 minutes and sit still, how the hell for you function anywhere else? TV in old school barbershop were for waiting customers. Once you got in the chair your head when down, you got spun in the chair.

    Hot towel? Well in a US and Turkish’s barber shop it is used before a shave, you get shaved at Sports Clips? No? Well, seems like a waste of time and a chair seat, read turn over rate.

    When do you get your hair washed at Sports Clips, before or after? Below reads exactly backwards of a true barbershop for men and boys.

    “Haircut, Steamed Towel, Shampoo and More
    Get away from it all and experience the Sport Clips MVP! Enjoy a precision haircut followed by an invigorating scalp massage with Tea Tree shampoo, a classic barbershop-style hot steamed towel treatment and a relaxing neck and shoulder treatment. You’ll leave feeling like a new man – and it only takes 20 minutes.”

    Man, it is like whoever thought this up never had a haircut or shaved in a real barbershop, nor ever visited a real hair salon, especially where the chair is rented to individual operators, i.e. the landlord rents the building out. These people have to build good reputation and have their own clientele. They sometimes share a common appointment person or staff.

    It pays to do your homework and see how like non franchised operations that you will be competing against work before getting in bed with this guy and his heart of a champion, brains of a toad, bubble gum idea.

    PS, in Turkey they will whip out what appears to be dental floss after a shave and wet roll it across the face to baby bottom smooth your face via of plucking out any outliers missed hair. Now that is service to weep for.

  • Been thinking about SC but based on the 50 or so comments ( almost all negative), I think it would be best to avoid this place. I have read terrible comments about people losing hundreds of thousands of dollars. People receiving no support from Home Office and terrible leadership from corporate.

    I appreciate your comments as they help made a final decision about this franchise. OF course some are doing well but it seems some are really struggling. Being a UPS store ( trying to sell) , I know all about the difficulties of the franchise business.

  • Mr. Sporty

    I own multiple shops in CA and am blessed to being doing well (despite the challenges CA presents with regulation and fees for everything). Not all of my locations are profitable, but as a portfolio, I am doing well. It’s a bit like a mutual fund, not all investments are profitable, but on the aggregate, they are.

    The business takes work. I do take issue with suggesting this is an absentee biz. What small biz owner would invest this money and then disappear. I am active in all facets of my businesses, except cutting – I’m not licensed for that.

    I’m expecting, absent CA really screwing up my world with more taxes and fees, that my Sport Clips shops will provide a solid annuity deep into retirement – after a lot of hard work and risk.

    I suspect the negative comments are mostly folks that were either unlucky in their location or found the effort far greater than they anticipated (I get that). Most of us doing well are too busy running our businesses to provide comments on forums such as these. I just happen to be waiting for a plane, bored and found this site.

    Good luck to anyone doing their due diligence and ask to speak with past and present owners. They’ll give you names.

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