Dan Wynkoop’s background is in 40 years of finance and accounting, mainly in the financial planning analysis specialty. After the 2008 economic downturn, Wynkoop decided it was time to start looking into other options. Today, he is the owner of a Club Pilates franchise in Portland, Oregon, which focuses on strength-training workouts for anyone at any age.
Wynkoop continued on in his finance career but with Portland being a small company town he knew his expertise was a luxury that many businesses couldn’t afford. After experiencing another transition Dan was introduced to the opportunity of franchise business ownership. Like many others, he realized there was more to the industry than he originally thought.
“I thought it was fast food, which I didn’t want any part of,” said Wynkoop. “But it opened my eyes that there was a lot more to franchising than fast food so we started perusing that path.”
“I started thinking that it would be really nice to do something on my own. After the economic downturn I got to thinking there’s got to be another way, but I could never come up with something on my own.”
Wynkoop and his wife spent time with another broker, yet quickly realized they were being pushed toward an option they knew didn’t match who they were, and what they needed out of a business. Along the way, it was a helpful suggestion from a previous recruiter that prompted Wynkoop to speak with Emily Anderson, FranNet consultant of Portland, Oregon.
“I spoke with Emily and let her know I was working with another broker. She talked to us with that in mind and gave us guidance and coaching,” said Wynkoop. “We got to the point of almost signing the franchise agreement with the other broker but pulled out at the last minute. We basically started over with Emily.”
After resetting the search, this time with Anderson at their side, Wynkoop was provided with an organized process that felt more aligned with their needs and wants. After some recommendations from Anderson and a thorough due diligence process, Club Pilates rose to the top. There were many factors that led Wynkoop to this choice, but one of the needs Anderson identified was the need to have fun.
“As I thought about what we needed the business to have, it’s a three-legged stool. That three-legged stool is equally weighted with financial success, employee and customer growth as the second, and the third leg, simply put, is fun,” said Wynkoop. “That is what brought Club Pilates to the top.”
The primary demographics for Pilates at present is 30’s to 50’s, female with disposable income. As Wynkoop states, Club Pilates is all about breaking that mold and extending the benefits of Pilates to all who wish to try it. As their motto says, “Do Pilates, Do Life,” Wynkoop is ready to bring the strength of Pilates to Portland with a mission to improve the lives of those in his community.
Wynkoop found a business that met all his criteria and then some. His advice to others seeking the same opportunity is to remember that the risk you have in a job is much higher long term than those who are in franchise business ownership, and to expect the unexpected.
“Franchising has higher initial risk, but it goes down as the business progresses. This has remained true with my own experience,” said Wynkoop. “Also expect that something will come up that you didn’t originally foresee, so build that into your model and be encouraged that this happens to everyone.”
Check out Dan Wynkoop’s Club Pilates in Progress Ridge in Beaverton, Oregon.
If you’re interested in discovering if business ownership is right for you, email Emily Anderson. You can also take our Entrepreneur Readiness Profile located at the top right of the homepage to learn your business values, strengths, and skill sets – a key first step in determining a business fit.