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Empowering Diverse Franchise Ownership

Empowering Diverse Franchise Ownership

The UPS Store supports diversity and inclusion in franchise business ownership with the Diversity Ownership Program.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent Annual Business Survey, approximately 18.3 percent (1 million) businesses are minority owned. That number has been steadily increasing over the past twenty years, and now more than 50 percent of all new businesses are started by owners from diverse backgrounds. Franchising is seeing a surge in minority ownership as well. According to a 2018 study by the IFA Foundation, 31 percent of franchised businesses are minority owned, compared to 19 percent of non-franchised businesses. This represents a 10 percent increase from the study five years prior. 

The UPS Store is proud to contribute to this growth and support diversity and inclusion in business ownership. Our Diversity Ownership Programhelps underserved groups make their dream of owning their own business a reality. 

Committed to Diversity and Inclusion 

The UPS Store is a top-ranking franchise opportunity that enables retail owners to provide essential services such as printing, shipping and mailbox services that support both small businesses and consumers to keep communities strong. We are proud to empower all groups, especially those who have been historically underrepresented, to become business owners and help the communities they call home thrive.

Initially launched in 2020, our Diversity Ownership Program equips underserved groups with resources to buy a The UPS Store franchise. The initiative was recently enhanced to further expand access and promote inclusivity in retail ownership to the LGBTQ+ community. “Any time we can inspire or help someone accomplish their dream of becoming a small business owner, that’s what keeps us going,” said Steve Chambers, Vice President of Retail and Business Development. “The UPS Store is committed to supporting and strengthening diversity, and the LGBTQ+ community felt like a next natural fit for this path toward business ownership.”

Now, eligible Black, Asian, Hispanic, Native American and LGBTQ+ franchise applicants can take advantage of a more affordable path to business ownership with an approximate 50 percent discount off the franchise fee. First-time buyers of a new The UPS Store franchise who self-identify as belonging to a racial or ethnic minority group or the LGBTQ+ community are eligible to receive $15,000 off the approximate $30,000 franchise fee, provided they commit to developing their location under our new store design.

“Expanding this program to be even more inclusive is something our retail leadership team felt strongly about. The UPS Store has a long history of diverse business ownership among its franchisees, and since launching this initiative last year, we’ve seen a strong response,” Chambers stated.

The UPS Store Diversity Ownership Program

For Philip Gonzalez, the Diversity Ownership Program solidified his decision to buy a The UPS Store franchise. He and his wife had been looking to open a franchise for the past few years but had never found the right fit. His brother recommended they research The UPS Store and they “fell in love.” Drawn to the brand, especially with the massive growth of online shipping trends and the explosion of small businesses, they felt now was the right time. The financial incentive helped make buying a The UPS Store more affordable. Of all the brands they evaluated, The UPS Store was the only franchisor that offered a discount to foster diversity in ownership.

Philip says, “I think out of all the franchises that we were looking at, it [the Diversity Ownership Program] definitely helped validate that this was the right brand and franchise to partner with. Investing in diversity, obviously for myself and my family is something that we hold dear. It just validated our decision when they offered the diversity program.” Although it’s been a lot of hard work, the Gonzalezes feel they made the right decision and celebrated the grand opening of their The UPS Store in West Garden Grove, CA in June. 

Like Philip, Dr. Rami Michael found the reduced cost of opening a franchise made possible by the Diversity Ownership Program helpful, “The program to assist minorities was very good news and helped me commit.” Rami left the high-stress medical field to become a The UPS Store franchise owner earlier this year. He says, “I studied the market and found that the UPS brand is kind of pandemic-immune. While many businesses were struggling, shipping was going up. I applied for the franchise and was approved – and here we are now; I own a UPS store. It makes me very happy.”

Resources for Success

Our commitment to fostering diversity in business ownership extends beyond the grand opening. Our comprehensive training and extensive ongoing support and guidance help retail owners make their stores a sustainable and successful long-term investment.

We provide world-class training to teach our retail owners business fundamentals as well as specifics related to store operations and providing excellent customer service. Our four-phase approach includes a combination of web-based training, in-person courses at The UPS Store University at our corporate campus in San Diego and hands-on learning in a The UPS Store Certified Training Center. Our goal is to equip every retail owner with the tools, strategies and knowledge necessary to confidently launch and grow their business.

Ongoing support and guidance are all around. From corporate to regional support staff and even fellow retail owners, assistance comes from all levels of The UPS Store network. One of the major forms of support is our multi-channel marketing and advertising campaigns. Television, digital, print, radio and more are used to increase brand awareness across the country. We also invest in regional and local advertising campaigns to help drive traffic to individual retail centers. In addition to these corporate sponsored initiatives, our internal marketing support center includes marketing templates, materials and other tools retail owners can use to promote their store within their community.

Opening a Franchise

Now is good time for opening a franchise business. Although the pandemic has created challenges for everyone, businesses that are part of a franchise network have fared better than independent small businesses. Thanks to its resilience, the franchise business model is predicted to potentially reach pre-pandemic levels of economic output by the end of the year. In fact, IFA’s annual Economic Outlook Report for Franchising projects a 3.5 percent increase in the number of franchises with more than 26,000 new locations expected to open their doors in 2021. This will create nearly 800,000 new jobs, employ around 8.3 million people and contribute $780 billion to the U.S. economy.

The UPS Store is thrilled to be part of this franchise industry growth. Earlier this year we celebrated the opening of our 5,000th retail location in the U.S. and we’re looking forward to continued momentum. We’re excited to help even more entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds become The UPS Store retail owners through our Diversity Ownership Program. For more details about this initiative or our franchise opportunities available across the country, reach out to our franchise development team.

2023 Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 Top Rated for Veterans badge

We Proudly Support Our Veterans

Participating partners with the VetFran program, The UPS Store offers qualifying veterans $15,000 off their franchise fee to start their new business. To learn more, contact The UPS Store Franchise Development Team.

Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 Ranked #4 in 2023 badge

Ranked for over 30 Consecutive Years

The UPS Store has been ranked #1 in the postal and business services category for over 30 years and remains in the top 5 overall for the seventh consecutive year according to the Franchise 500 list.

Kristin Howard

Franchisee, Michigan

The reason my husband and I decided to go into franchising and specifically with The UPS Store, is the different opportunities we're given with the business. The UPS Store has name recognition as well as opportunities to expand.

Debbie Adams

Franchisee, Kentucky

What I enjoy most about being a The UPS Store owner is working with my customers. We are the solution specialists for our customers.

Jim George

Franchisee, Illinios

My favorite part about The UPS Store network is the camaraderie with other franchisees. Everybody loves to help everybody else. You’re really part of a family.

Greg Murray

Franchisee, Florida

The interesting thing about The UPS Store is that when a customer walks through the door there's an extremely high probability that they're coming there to do something that is important to them. So at the end of the day, what we do for customers is very important and they are trusting that we are going to do it well.

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Mariana Huberman

Franchisee, Washington, D.C.

One of the things that I love about The UPS Store franchise system is that you're not ever in this by yourself. The franchisees of The UPS Store network are great.

Heidi Morris

Franchisee, Colorado

The thing I enjoy most about being a The UPS Store franchisee is I get to get up, go to work and know that I'm helping other business owners succeed in what they're doing.

Bob Brown

Franchisee, Tennessee

Owning a The UPS Store franchise has changed my life because it's finally given me the opportunity to engage my customers and my staff and be able to take real pride in what I do. As a franchisee, we get faced with solving peoples' problems every day and we do everything we possibly can to try to help.

Marie Jensen

Franchisee, Oregon

My favorite thing about The UPS Store is the variety. I love the variety of customers, I love the variety of services; getting to know the customers, meeting their needs, finding out how we can help them accomplish what they need to accomplish and seeing how happy they are. That makes me ecstatic.

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Tad Mollnhauer

Franchisee, Florida

With the products and services that The UPS Store provides we can make a difference in people's lives and that is the best reason for being a The UPS Store owner.

Joy Batchelor

Franchisee, Idaho

What makes being a The UPS Store franchisee worthwhile at the end of the day is the customers. The customers treat us like we're family.

Paul Erchinger

Franchisee, Texas

One nice benefit of owning a The UPS Store franchise for me has been that it gives me the opportunity to be more involved in the community. As I make relationships with others it seems like no matter what the environment is, in one way or another business comes out of that and that's not my objective—it's been a secondary benefit to being involved in the community.

Chris Reminder

Franchisee, Ohio

There are several things that I really enjoy about being a The UPS Store franchisee. First and foremost it allows me to get to know the people in the local community and that is a lot of fun. We get to see people on a regular basis. We get to know their life stories. That's a lot of fun.

Bruce Jones

Franchisee, Kentucky

Since we have joined The UPS Store, our life has changed by just having more time to spend together as a family. We've been very fortunate with the stores that we have and we have a great staff that looks out for our best interest and we look out for theirs.

Lonnie Williams

Franchisee, Oklahoma

What makes The UPS Store so successful is it gives each individual an opportunity to grow with the network and just meet the challenges that are brought to them on a daily basis. Every day gives us a new opportunity to help another person, to help another small business, to answer a question and to solve a problem.

Jeff Graham

Franchisee, Alabama

I love my customers. I love my employees. I love every person, every face that comes into my store. I enjoy every day going into work and I can't see doing anything else for the rest of my life.

Stacie Stigar

Franchisee, Alaska

I think that this franchise is so successful because of all of the resources that are available to us as center owners—we have marketing materials, we have so many different opportunities for help from the home office, and it just really makes for a great franchise.

Don Pollard

Franchisee, New Jersey

I think the thing that makes this franchise successful is a number of things. First of all we have an outstanding system, we have a great product, a great brand, and we're able to attract dynamic people to run these centers and run the business. So I think when you put all that together it really provides for a winning combination.

Mary Ellen Nichols

Franchisee, Tennessee

The thing I love about the franchise is that you have the UPS name backing you but yet you also have the autonomy to make your own decisions to promote.

Laura Griffin

Franchisee, Florida

In the eight short months I've owned my The UPS Store it has really changed my life. I've gone from being an employee of someone else to being an employer of my associates. It's a big responsibility but it's exciting every day.

Sandy Scandrett

Franchisee, Wisconsin

Being a The UPS Store franchisee has improved every aspect of my life. It's very rewarding financially, professionally, and emotionally. I have a large number of regular customers who are really, really appreciative of everything we do.

Kristie Robison

Franchisee, Alabama

I would say owning a The UPS Store location has changed my life to where I have more time and flexibility. In owning your own business you get your store up and running and you get employees that you can trust that are going to help keep your store running. This allows me to attend my two boys' ball games and also travel and do things with them so it has really changed my life for the better.