Princeton and Diana Kokku are no strangers to fast growth through hard work to make their own success. Prior to venturing into the franchise world, Princeton garnered his own success as the owner of an IT consulting firm. His firm quickly grew into the 8th fastest growing company in Minnesota, as recognized by the Minneapolis Business Journal. The business, which Princeton started from his home, is now operating from a 25,000 square foot office suite.
In February 2013, Princeton began looking for opportunities to diversify and saw franchising as a great opportunity. After exploring multiple opportunities with a franchise consultant, Princeton stumbled upon the salon suite model of Salons by JC. Educating himself about the company, the structure, and overall mission, he knew this was the right fit.
A key element that stood out about the Salons by JC model was the opportunity to help other business owners get their start, operate independently and find success, just like he did.
“I was drawn to the model, but I really connected with and trust the team at Salons By JC,” Princeton says. “They’re genuinely invested in the success of every franchisee. Everyone in this community is willing to share the lessons they’ve learned. The personal touch that the Concierge brings to the salon is unique and brilliant. There is no question that I made the right choice,” Princeton says.
After 100 days of construction, finding the perfect space and signing a lease, the Salons by JC Burnsville location opened its doors on July 1, 2018. This was the beginning of a story that still has plenty of chapters left.
Diana utilized her marketing background in collaboration with the in-house marketing team to create an exceptionally smooth salon suite owner on-boarding process.
“I’ve been handling all of the marketing and suite leasings, while Princeton was in charge of the retail center lease and construction,” Diana shares. “We’ve had a few moments where we had to remind each other to stay in our own lanes, but mostly it’s been a lot of fun working together!”
Salons by JC Burnsville has had very good traction from the beginning. Their location proudly opened at 35% occupancy in a large space with 47 total suites.
“Salons by JC locations are truly the best product in the market when compared to other salon suites concepts. The marketing team at Salons by JC is very knowledgeable and worked with us to customize the messaging for our market; which was another advantage over our competition,” Diana says.
“We did a soft opening on July 1st and that was a proud moment. Seeing the finished salon with all of the beautiful finishes, our glowing and excited suite owners, and being there with my wife and new baby —Adley— and our families; it was a huge accomplishment,” said Princeton
Princeton and Diana said that the most rewarding part of this process has been hearing comments about the beauty of the salon. “Several guests have asked the salon suite owners if they’re going to raise their rates now that they’re in such a high-end place. This was a great compliment!” they said.
“I’ve really enjoyed meeting and getting to know all of the salon suite owners. During construction, we would meet at Starbucks and I’d hear about their business and show them the floor plans. Each time it felt like I walked away with a new friend. We truly love our salon suite owners, ” Diana said.
Both Princeton and Diana agree that the experience has been such a joy to them. They have big plans to keep expanding with their community at Salons by JC. Be sure to stay tuned to see what this dynamic duo has in store.
About Salons by JC: In 1997, Jack Griffey and Cecil Miller began their journey to transform the beauty industry one salon suite at a time. Like most young entrepreneurs, they started out with a big idea but had to learn how to start and run a business from scratch. After much perseverance and hard work, one year later, they opened Salons by JC in Dallas, TX in 1998, welcoming beauty and wellness specialists who were ready to break free from the traditional salon model. The company has since moved its headquarters from Dallas to San Antonio, where it continues to grow through franchising. Today, Salons by JC has 90 locations in 26 states and Canada. For more information, visit salonsbyjc.com or salonsbyjc.com/franchise