Clothes MentorWomen's clothing, shoes, and accessories resale stores
- 2023 Franchise 500 Rank
N/R Not ranked last year
- Initial investment
$272K - $396K
- Units as of 2023
121 10% over 3 years
Fashion is a booming industry, but it's not always about right off-the-line, high-fashion items, especially for women looking to be eco-conscious and budget-minded.
Clothes Mentor has recently reinvented the fashion resale industry for women, offering savvy customers the opportunity to pay cash for in-style fashions, designer purses and accessories at excellent value.
Clothes Mentor provides upscale resale opportunities for clothes. Women can find the perfect attire for their next outfits while buying things that have already been used, fulfilling multiple needs simultaneously.
With approximately 150 Clothes Mentor stores scattered throughout the United States, it might be the perfect time to start a Clothes Mentor franchise business of your own. Keep reading for a closer look.
Why should you start a Clothes Mentor franchise?
Starting a Clothes Mentor franchise could be a great idea if you want to get into the fashion industry as a small business owner of resale stores.
Clothes Mentor, headquartered in Plymouth, Minnesota, sells designer clothing and name-brand apparel with a cash-on-counter consignment business model, merging many needs and benefits for franchise owners.
For example, Clothes Mentor has grown to approximately 150 locations across 30 states in 10 years. This is partially because fashion is, as always, a thriving industry, but it's also because Clothes Mentor operates within a relatively unique niche.
Clothes Mentor specifically provides women with upscale, high-quality, gently-handled clothing. Through this resale business model, women can feel good about not creating further environmental waste.
At the same time, they won't have to compromise their fashion sense. Therefore, if you want to run an eco-friendly fashion store, Clothes Mentor could be just the ticket.
Clothes Mentor locations often operate with a very high gross profit margin, enabling you to scale up your business quickly. You can have your own staff and store manager, meaning you don’t necessarily have to run the day-to-day operations of your business, either.
Approximately 30% of current Clothes Mentor franchisees and store owners have opened additional stores throughout their contracts. That's partially why Clothes Mentor has been ranked as one of the fastest-growing franchises by Entrepreneur Magazine.
Remember, your customer base will always need new clothes. If you serve your initial batch of customers well, nothing is stopping them from coming back for new resale clothing time and time again.
All clothing eventually wears out, so you could feasibly continue selling to the same target audience base in your local area for years to come.
In addition, you'll benefit from a proprietary and cloud-based point-of-sale system, which gives you an industrial-strength tool to manage your inventory and handle cash flow efficiently.
Prices are affordable, the brand name is recognizable and beneficial and your customer base is stable and consistent; what's not to like? Those with a keen business sense have significant potential for long-term, steady success.
Does Clothes Mentor grant exclusive territory?
While this business opportunity does have a lot to offer, it’s also true that you may have to compete with other store owners if you don’t choose your store location correctly.
Clothes Mentor does not grant exclusive territories to new franchisees, as stated on the franchise disclosure document (FDD).
You can easily avoid this downside by choosing the right local market for a new Clothes Mentor store. You can open up the only current Clothes Mentor franchised location in your local area by conducting market research.
This is doubly beneficial in the long term. If your initial store succeeds, you can open more Clothes Mentor stores in your broader city or county. Then you can leverage your current experience to ensure that new stores are as successful as your first opening.
What do franchisees have to say about Clothes Mentor?
Because of this potential and the benefits mentioned above, current Clothes Mentor franchisees have nothing but good things to say about this franchisor.
They speak positively about the support they receive, including the training that ensures every new business owner is set up for success.
Furthermore, franchisee reviews mention how cheerful and loyal a customer base typically is. Then there are profits to consider, also mentioned in positive reviews.
About 75% of stores enjoy sales revenue of between $434,000 and $1.7 million annually. Meanwhile, the top 25% of stores average a net profit of $188,000.
What support resources does Clothes Mentor offer franchisees?
Clothes Mentor doesn’t leave you out to dry when you begin your franchised location.
For example, new franchisees get lease negotiation and site selection assistance. Through these programs, you’ll be able to find the perfect location for your new shop, especially when accounting for real estate costs.
As your business gets ready to run, Clothes Mentor will provide you with grand opening support, access to a toll-free support line and security and safety procedures. Through the field operations assistance via the proprietary software, you’ll always have a quick way to contact corporate if you have a question.
Of course, marketing is crucial in this industry, which is why Clothes Mentor offers co-op advertising assistance and templates.
With these templates, you can create compelling, emotionally resonating ad campaigns for your region or local customers, making your store stand out.
Clothes Mentor doesn’t shirk away from digital advertising either, offering support for social media advertising, email marketing and website development.
By the end, your retail store will be a powerful force in the industry. You’ll constantly get new clients and retail customers from your digital marketing campaigns and the strength of your e-commerce shop.
Related: Retail Franchises to Start Now
How much does starting a Clothes Mentor franchise cost?
If starting a Clothes Mentor franchise sounds excellent, now it’s time to consider the overall costs you’ll need to foot to get things rolling.
Firstly, you'll need to pay a franchise fee of $25,000 but also have $90,000 in liquid cash. Your net worth should be at least $400,000, and your total investment will be between $250,000 and $370,000. In terms of other franchise opportunity expenses, this initial investment is middling.
More importantly, royalty fees are very reasonable. They are just 4% overall, with another ad royalty fee of about $2000 per year. That $2000 may still be worth it, considering the marketing support resources mentioned above for Clothes Mentor franchise owners.
Does Clothes Mentor provide financial aid?
Clothes Mentor does provide a $2500 rebate on the franchise fee for veterans exclusively. That means if you are a veteran franchisee, you’ll have to pay your franchise fee upfront, but after a few months, you’ll get refunded once your business is up and running and selling women’s clothing.
Furthermore, Clothes Mentor has various relationships with third-party lending institutions like banks. Through these relationships, you can get all the financing support you need to cover your startup costs, like equipment and inventory expenses.
All in all, if you want to start a Clothes Mentor franchise, odds are you’ll be able to do so through some combination of financial tools.
Related: Freedom in a Fashion Franchise
What kind of training is required to start a Clothes Mentor franchise?
Clothes Mentor also provides extensive support, including 32 hours of classroom training and 20.5 hours of on-the-job training for all new franchisees before you sell your first piece of clothing.
The training modules are entirely separate. The classes will teach you all about business planning, financial management, store operations and merchandising. These skills will be invaluable if you haven't run a retail location in the past.
The on-the-job training is more specific and tells you more about the day-to-day operations inherent in running an apparel shop.
You can’t open your store unless you or the designated principal owner completes both modules. On top of that, remember that you may sometimes need to attend supplemental and refresher training programs throughout the terms of your franchise agreement.
All that said, the training is beneficial and feels more supportive than it does didactic. It can be beneficial if you’re still learning the ropes of business operations or haven’t run a similar store to Clothes Mentor.
Start a Clothes Mentor franchise today
Nothing is stopping you from contacting Clothes Mentor about franchise opportunities. If you’re interested, start today.
Check out Entrepreneur’s other articles for more information about Clothes Mentor and other franchise opportunities.
About Clothes Mentor
More from Clothes Mentor
Clothes Mentor is a Perfect Fit.
Clothes Mentor is so much more than retail. Our upscale resale concept serves fashionable women locally through a stylish store front and a national eCommerce website. Your community benefits from a “cash-on-the-spot” offer to buy gently used fashions in a convenient way. Those amazing items are given a new life by connecting to shoppers seeking desirable brands at a great price.
Our most successful franchisees seek flexible lifestyles. They are individuals and couples seeking to gain wealth, freedom of time and enjoy giving back and being part of their communities.
Resale is predicted to grow eleven times faster than broader retail clothing by 2025 to more than $77 billion annually. The timing is right to join our community of 135 Clothes Mentor stores with desirable territories available.
Clothes Mentor is the perfect fit to give you flexibility and growth potential. Start building the future you want today.
Related Spotlight Article: Clothes Mentor Franchisees Tap into the Booming Resale Retail Experience
|Franchising Since||2007 (16 years)|
|# of employees at HQ||16|
This company is offering new franchisees in the following US states: Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Wyoming
|# of Units||121 (as of 2023)|
Information for Franchisees
Here's what you need to know if you're interested in opening a Clothes Mentor franchise.
Financial Requirements & Ongoing Fees
Here's what you can expect to spend to start the business and what ongoing fees the franchisor charges throughout the life of the business.
Initial Franchise Fee
Definition: The initial fee paid to a franchisor to join their system
What you need to know: Found in Item 5 of the FDD, this may be a flat fee, or may vary based on territory size, experience, or other factors.The franchise fee is an up-front (one-time) cost that a new franchisee pays to the franchisor. This fee is usually due at the signing of the franchise agreement and covers the right to use the franchisor's trademarks, name, and related business systems.
Definition: The total amount necessary to begin operation of the franchise
What you need to know: The initial investment includes the franchise fee, along with other startup expenses such as real estate, equipment, supplies, business licenses, and working capital. This is outlined in a chart in Item 7 of the FDD, showing a range of possible costs from low to high.
|$272,000 - $395,500|
Net Worth Requirement
Definition: The minimum net worth you must have in order to qualify to become a franchisee of this company
What you need to know: Net worth is the value of a person's assets minus liabilities. Assets include cash, stocks, retirement accounts, and real estate. Liabilities include items like mortgages, car payments, and credit card debt.
Definition: The minimum liquid capital you must have available in order to qualify to become a franchisee of this company.
Definition: A discount or other incentive offered to military veterans who buy a franchise with this company.
|$2,500 rebate on franchise fee|
Definition: A ongoing fee paid to the franchisor on a regular basis.
What you need to know: Most franchisors require franchisees to pay an ongoing royalty fee, which is detailed in Item 6 of the FDD. This fee is typically a percentage of weekly or monthly gross sales, but may also be a flat weekly, monthly, or annual fee.
Ad Royalty Fee
Definition: An going fee paid to the franchisor on a regular basis to support advertising or marketing efforts.
What you need to know: This may also be called advertising fee, marketing fee, brand fund fee, and more, but the basic purpose is the same-- to support promotion of the brand systemwide. As with the royalty fee, it is detailed in Item 6 of the FDD, and can be a percentage of weekly or monthly gross sales or a weekly, monthly, or annual fee.
Term of Agreement
Definition: The length of time your franchise agreement will last.
What you need to know: Franchise terms are typically anywhere from 5 to 20 years in length, but are sometimes instead dependent on factors such as the term of your lease. Once your term is up, you may have the option to renew your agreement, typically for a smaller fee than the original franchise fee.
|Is franchise term renewable?||Yes|
Some franchisors offer in-house financing, while others have relationships with third-party financing sources to which they refer qualified franchisees.
|Third Party Financing||Clothes Mentor has relationships with third-party sources which offer financing to cover the following: startup costs, equipment, inventory|
Training & Support Offered
Franchisors offer initial training programs and a variety of ongoing support options to help franchisees run their businesses.
|On-The-Job Training||18 hours|
|Classroom Training||31.5 hours|
Meetings & Conventions
Security & Safety Procedures
Franchisee Intranet Platform
Additional details about running this franchise.
|Is absentee ownership allowed?||No|
Can this franchise be run from home/mobile unit?
Definition: The business can be run from your home and/or a vehicle, and it is not necessary to have a retail facility, office space, or warehouse.
Can this franchise be run part time?
Definition: This business can be run by the owner on a part-time basis (less than 40 hours per week) and/or as a side business; it is not necessary for the business to be open/run full-time.
|# of employees required to run||8-10|
Are exclusive territories available?
Definition: An exclusive territory is a fixed area in which you are given the right to operate and in which no other units of the same franchise may be opened.
What you need to know: Territory size may be based on factors such as radius, population size, zip codes, and more. Details can be found in Item 12 of the FDD.
Franchise 500 Ranking History
Compare where Clothes Mentor landed on this year's Franchise 500 Ranking versus previous years.
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