How a young, driven entrepreneur became a top-performer with our iconic ice cream franchise
If anyone knows how to run a Cold Stone Creamery® ice cream franchise, it’s Chris Barwick. The young entrepreneur spent several years managing a Cold Stone Creamery franchise before leaping into business ownership almost two years ago.
In 2016, Barwick became the general manager of the Cold Stone Creamery store in Anaheim, California which is located less than half a mile from the entrance to Disneyland, making him no stranger to handling very busy stores.
His experience delivered success after he purchased an existing location in San Dimas, California whose sales had not been actively growing. Barwick’s ambition led to big plans and even bigger growth goals.
Not even two years after leaping into business ownership, Barwick has dramatically increased his store’s sales. More than that, as a global pandemic delivered economic shutdowns and forced business owners to close their doors, Barwick’s ice cream shop experienced continued strong sales, ultimately creating momentum that is not looking to cease anytime soon.
As people hear his story, they wonder what did he get right? So, we recently joined Chris for a wide-ranging interview where he shared that by following Cold Stone Creamery’s solid business model and providing an exceptional experience for every customer that walks through his doors, Barwick has created a business that is set up to thrive for years to come.
Check out exactly what he had to say below.
Did your experience as a manager prepare you to run your own ice cream franchise?
Absolutely! Working at one of the top-performing stores in the country definitely prepared me for business ownership. When my mother retired, we decided it was time to go into business ownership, and I am really grateful that I have her as a partner.
In the time that you’ve been a franchisee, how has your business grown?
Almost immediately after taking over the San Dimas store, we began to see substantial growth. More than that, we have continued growing since then, even amidst the global pandemic. When the economy began to re-open, sales rose tremendously. The results have been incredible.
What do you think is the largest attribute to a store’s growth?
Being on third-party delivery apps has boosted our traffic dramatically. But honestly, the most important thing we’ve done is to become a part of the community. San Dimas is a small town and relationships are really important here. This is why I focus so much on customer service, making sure that my staff gives extra smiles and are super friendly. These things have a big impact.
Why would you recommend Cold Stone Creamery ice cream franchise to an entrepreneur looking for a business opportunity?
This is a really rewarding and fun business to own! You see so many happy people every day. You meet their families and you become a part of their daily lives. As a business owner, you get a lot of flexibility and work/life balance and most importantly, you get to be a part of a brand that is there with you every step of the way.