HELPING VETERANS TRANSITION
From the depths of the ocean to getting in deep with Veterans who are looking to explore their entrepreneurial options, the SuperBroker™ is comfortable in any situation.
Business and franchise broker Curt Maier with Murphy Business Northwest, Inc., specializes in helping Veterans find franchise opportunities. He’s been a business and franchise broker since 2011. “I work with buyers to find the right small business opportunity,” Maier said during a recent interview from his office in Bellevue, WA, “either an existing business or a franchise.”
Usually, a broker will either help people find a business or a franchise opportunity, but he is the rarity that helps people find either one, which makes him, as he put it, the SuperBroker. ™
Although located in Greater Seattle, he has clients throughout the country and around the world, Maier said.
And people need his service, the business and franchise broker said, because people don’t generally know much about opening a small business. They don’t know the pros and cons of trying to open an independent business versus opening a franchise. And that’s where he comes in, walking them through the process.
Helping His Own
Maier has chosen to specifically help Veterans because he is a Veteran himself, having graduated from the Navy ROTC program at the University of Notre Dame and having served as a nuclear submarine officer on a fleet ballistic missile submarine patrolling the coast of Russia for three months at a time during height of Cold War in the early 1980’s.
While they are completely at home while serving in the military, the majority of Veterans just don’t know about the franchising opportunities available to them once they leave the military, Maier said. Typically, they’ll need to find a job once they leave the service and if they are not interested in working for a company, they can either further their education or pursue entrepreneurial opportunities.
That’s where he comes in, because he can point them in the right direction if they are interested in owning their own business, whether they are in the Puget Sound area in Washington or if they want to return home anywhere in the country. As Maier is a franchisee himself of Murphy Business, he is part of a network that includes associates around the country who can get Veterans franchise opportunities virtually anywhere they want to settle in the United States. Plus, he can help them get everything taken care of prior to them leaving the military so they are ready to start on their franchising journey as soon as they are ready to transition to civilian life.
While there are many brokers out there, Maier believes his ability to mix a small town office feel with backing from the biggest brokerage firm in North America, Murphy Business, makes him stand out from other brokers. He has that network of over 275 fellow Murphy brokers who can assist him in doing his work, finding franchisees for over 300 top franchisors across all industries in his inventory or referring small business owners who want to sell their business to these Veterans.
Unlike his competition, he has colleagues similarly licensed across North America that he can tap for help. But, he still retains that small town feel to his business because he does everything himself without assistants or subcontracting. The sales process for his listed businesses and all negotiations for his clients are done by him.
When clients come to him, they are getting a seasoned businessman who has 20 years of corporate experience who can evaluate businesses and find the right franchise or business opportunity for them in any industry and for any investment level, he stated.
Typically, Veterans come to him as a referral from places such as the Armed Forces’ Transition Assistance Programs, which help people who are ready to leave the military decide what their next step is. Once he’s working with them, Maier does his best to understand what these Veterans are looking for and why they want to become a small business owner or franchisee. Typically, he said, they tell him they want to work toward their own goals and keep the money they earn rather than have someone else’s company benefit from their hard work.
Then, he finds out what they want from a business; what size and what type (business-to-business or business-to-consumer, etc). He ascertains what they can contribute to the business in terms of skills and experience and what they can afford or how much funding they can procure.
Once he’s gleaned the information he needs, he will present the client with typically three franchise options and ask them what they think of the concepts and what they like and don’t like about them. He will use this feedback to refine the search and keep bringing various franchise concepts to the client until he finds something that fits perfectly. Once they’ve chosen, he explains everything about the business to them and then introduces them to the franchise development professionals with the franchisor they’ve chosen. From there, the franchisor takes the client through the franchising process, but Maier still keeps in touch with them throughout this entire process and is their advocate.
“I work with them hand-in-hand every step of the way,” he said. What makes Veterans great franchisees is their ability to follow and execute a business plan, along with their trustworthiness, credibility, honesty, good leadership, realistic goals, ability to take direction well and openness to suggestions, Maier said. They’re also good at training employees, he added, because they understand the value of good training.
Whether on a strategic deterrent patrol off the Russian coast during one of the tensest periods in recent history or delving into the mindset of an aspiring entrepreneur, the SuperBroker™ can handle it all.