Monday, March 22, 2010

Snack in a Cup Franchise

Snack-in-a-cup franchise ready to grow

18 Mar 2010

The owner of a budding four-unit franchise is hoping to capitalize on consumers' love for portable food with a new mall-based concept called Cup It. The company is founded by Mete Oguz, 34, a Turkish entrepreneur who created an industrial machinery import company in Turkey before moving to the United States. Cup It offers portion controlled food servings in a cup.

Billed as a cost-conscious healthy alternative to typical fast-food fare, the menu includes snack cups of corn, potatoes, or waffles and fruit.

Cup It's four products include:
Corn in a Cup, made of steamed Malaysian corn topped with a choice of cheeses, butter, mayonnaise and spices
Potato in Cup, using the company's original, patent-pending mashing machine to grind up the spuds
Pota-Corn, a combination of items one and two
Waffle in Cup, a freshly baked crispy waffle topped with fruit and Nutella hazelnut spread
Cup It also recently introduced three new products: Grilled Cheese In A Cup, with choice of three types of bread and four cheeses; Meatballs In A Cup and Belgian Waffle. All cups are under $5.

Oguz said he was inspired by the success of Malaysian corn-in-a-cup retail kiosks in other countries.

"With more than 3,000 international locations, Malaysian corn-in-cup kiosks have become quite popular in Europe and Far East," he said in a news release. "I know Americans will love our products because we serve their favorite fresh, healthy foods in a reasonably portioned cup."

Since the launch of the Corn in a Cup product, Oguz has been trying to educate Americans on the true health value of corn. He points out that the country's traditional method of machine-extracting corn from the ear tears the root of the niblet and virtually eliminates all health value of corn.

Malaysian corn is removed by hand from the ear, keeping the root maintained along with all of the nutrients.

"The landscape is limitless for us as a brand and our product line is limitless because imagine the possibilities of what can go in a cup," Oguz said.

Franchise expansion plans

Launched in the United States in April 2009, Cup It has four locations in the New York metropolitan area and is now ready to expand.

New franchisees should expect to spend between $50,000 and $80,000 on their initial investment, including a $15,000 initial franchise fee, plus the cost of equipment, supplies, and marketing for a kiosk.

Additionally, Cup It has launched a cart option more for outdoor venues, with initial fees ranging from $10,000 to $20,000. Existing food service establishments can license the right to sell Cup It products for as little as $5,000, including a $2,500 licensing fee, plus a $2,500 inventory investment.

"The low cost of investment has positioned us very well for steady American growth," Oguz said. "Our high-tech, top-of-the-line kiosk designs cost far less than any other mall restaurant concept. This provides scalability for our franchisees in that they can quickly own multiple locations over a little time period, thus helping them reach their goals of becoming a multi-unit operator."

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