Marcus and Aracely Villarreal are no strangers when it comes to franchising. As multi-brand owners, they have grown their portfolio quickly. The mother-son franchise duo has seen high profitability and great success with their original PJ’s Coffee location in Palmview, TX that opened in November of 2020. They loved the brand so much that they recently opened their second traditional drive-thru location in McAllen, TX, and they currently have two additional locations in development.
The Villarreal family joined the PJ’s Coffee franchise in 2020. Prior to investing in PJ’s Coffee, the family owned and operated six Subway franchises. While Aracely gained entrepreneurial experience as a franchise owner, her son Marcus worked at one of the Subway locations before he went to college to study business. He eventually found his way back to franchising and joined his parents as Subway franchisees.
Marcus and Aracely have been determined to discover new ways to provide fast and efficient customer service to all guests, and have been able to do so with their traditional drive-thru locations.
Convenience Meets Coffee
As Texas natives, Marcus and Aracely understand the importance of convenience while living in the hottest part of Texas. “Due to the hot weather conditions, Texans are all about convenience and quick service, therefore, having a drive-thru is a necessity for our coffee shop,” said Marcus. According to a study conducted by QSR magazine, customers spend a total of 4.5 minutes in a drive-thru before receiving their food or drinks. The convenience of drive-thrus is always a selling point for customers who want their food and/or drinks instantly. Guests appreciate the convenience of picking up their favorite drink simply by cruising through the drive-thru, especially those who are always on the run. “The drive-thru really sets us apart from other coffee shops in the area and that’s why guests continue to choose us for all of their coffee cravings,” said Marcus.
In addition to providing quick service to their guests, Marcus and Aracely decided to open drive-thru locations to maximize sales. Coffee shops with drive-thrus are often more profitable than others because they’re able to serve more customers at a time. PJ's Coffee locations featuring drive-thrus were up 12.1% in 2020 and 17.8% in 2021. Also, locations with drive-thrus generate 40% more revenue compared to locations without a drive-thru.
Growing with PJ’s Coffee
Thanks to the support and southern hospitality from the PJ’s Coffee corporate team, Marcus and Aracely are continuing to grow their business and achieve their goals. “Although we were franchise owners before, our experience with PJ’s Coffee so far has been unmatched,” Aracely admitted. As the only location within the market serving beignets and the first in the market with a drive-thru, the duo is eager to open additional locations within the next year. They’re also looking forward to continuing providing quality products and services to their customers as they drive the brand name and culture.
As Marcus and Aracely look toward the future, they plan to continue their journey with PJ’s Coffee by opening two more south Texas locations. Their drive and passion for the PJ’s Coffee brand will allow them to continue to expand and achieve every goal they set. Marcus and Aracely are proud to be multi-unit owners of a franchise that cares for their customers and franchise owners.
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Same-Store Sales Increase