ASP Makes Inroads
Credit: America’s Swimming Pool Co. / Rachael Hammet
America’s Swimming Pool Co. recently opened franchises in two new states, with a third on the way.
The Macon, Ga., service firm added franchise owners in Ohio and Utah — and Nevada’s first location is expected to open later this year.
“Both of these franchise owners were looking to start a business, and both were actually looking to start a swimming pool business,” said Stewart Vernon, CEO of ASP. “… Both owners, much like a common theme of many of our franchise owners, had a [negative] experience with a swimming pool service company. We find that drives several owners to think, ‘Well, what if I could do this better?’ … And that usually leads them to us.”
Another franchise owner will open Nevada’s first ASP in Las Vegas after attending the company’s June Pool School at the firm’s on-site training facility.
It was not only the strength of the company and ASP’s ranking in Entrepreneur magazine, but also the lure of the pool industry that led to Jacob Rhodes opening a franchise in Utah.
“The swimming pool industry is great, especially in Utah. I was surprised by how big the pool population is and how exciting it is to be in this market,” said the owner of ASP of Saratoga Springs. “That’s why I opened up this business. I wanted a franchise, and ASP was the one that provided that for me.”
Being friends with an Arizona-based ASP franchise owner didn’t hurt either. Rhodes said his friend’s experience and encouragement led to starting his own ASP location.
“Business is going really well; it’s very busy,” Rhodes said. “I enjoy it a lot. I’m just grateful to be a business owner and have my own schedule. The responsibility falls on my shoulders.”
Also looking for a new business venture was Jason Fisher, who had retired after 20 years in the U.S. Air Force.
“Pools are a source of fun for the family,” Fisher said. “When we were new pool owners, we had a tough time getting the chemistry right, and we thought we could help other people so their pool becomes a source of fun, rather than a source of frustration.”
Fisher and his wife, Lisa, started the first Ohio franchise, ASP of Southwest Ohio, offering maintenance, repairs and renovations in the Cincinnati and Dayton markets. Already they’ve completed three pool paintings, five liner installs and more than 15 openings.
“The folks that we’ve served have been absolutely enthusiastic and thankful for what we’ve been able to help them do,” Fisher added.
Entering three new states also means ASP will start to field interest from even more potential franchise owners in those regions.
“We find that anytime we enter a new area, we’re not only marketing on behalf of the individual franchise owner, specifically, but we also gain a lot of traction and name recognition over time,” Vernon said. “… We find that other territories will spawn just from the local presence we get by entering a new market.”
With the additions, ASP now offers service in more than 200 cities in 17 states.