Serial entrepreneur is passionate about creating opportunities and making people happy with the iconic ice cream franchise
Mohammad Razai has been in the food business for his entire life. As a young man, Mohammad worked with his father as a Halal food vendor on the streets of New York City, and shortly after graduating college, he went to work for Pepperidge Farms, where he worked as a district manager for several years.
But he always knew that he would one day go into business for himself.
“Having a job pays for the necessities of life, but it doesn’t pay for the luxuries,” Mohammad says. “Owning businesses gives you the opportunity to have the life you want, to take care of your family, and to create opportunities in the communities you operate in. It’s extremely rewarding.”
In 2010, Mohammad became a franchise owner with Nathan’s Famous, and he never looked back. Mohammad became a multi-unit investor with several brands, including Subway and Pinkberry, and in 2017, Mohammad opened his first Cold Stone Creamery® franchise location.
“I love building up businesses – it’s in my DNA,” Mohammad says. “I love waking up at 6:00 a.m. with a purpose. I have so many people that are relying on me that I am driven to succeed day-in and day-out and to make sure that everything is being run the right way.”
Even though Mohammad is very hands-on with all of his businesses, he is the first to give credit to his team for helping him to continue to grow and expand.
“I have an amazing group of managers and supervisors who work with me, many of whom have been with me for more than 10 years,” Mohammad says. “I lead by example. I’m the first one to grab a broom when I visit my stores, and I never ask them to do anything that I wouldn’t do myself. I believe that if you take care of your people, they will take care of your customers. This is especially true in my Cold Stone Creamery locations, where exceptional customer service creates customer loyalty. Happy employees create happy customers who want to visit you again and again.”
Mohammad also credits the ongoing support he receives from Kahala Brands™, one of the largest franchisors in the world, and the parent company of both Cold Stone Creamery and Pinkberry, for helping him exceed his goals as an entrepreneur.
“The support that Kahala Brands provides is exceptional,” he says. “I’m in business for myself but not by myself. It’s almost like having a shadow. If you need something, they’re always there to help you.”
Today, Mohammad owns Cold Stone Creamery locations in suburban areas of Massachusetts, as well in Albany, New York and New York City. Always looking to expand, Mohammad believes that now is the best time to open a Cold Stone Creamery location as the real-estate climate is advantageous to entrepreneurs.
“There’s never been a better time to open a new Cold Stone Creamery,” he says. “There are so many open storefronts, and the landlords are willing to negotiate with you. I’m going to keep expanding because I believe we haven’t come close to tapping the New York City market. There can be a Cold Stone Creamery every two miles in New York City – that’s how much people love our ice cream.”
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