The topics outlined here are the most significant policy highlights and statements of Street Corner’s principal business elements.
1. Franchise Agreement. The terms and provisions of the Franchise Agreement between McColla Enterprise, Ltd. and its franchisees for operation of Street Corner businesses are specifically referenced and incorporated into this operations manual. The Franchise Agreement contains many details and disclosures about the business operations of the company and McColla Enterprises, Ltd.’s expectations of the franchisees concerning the operation of this type of business.
2. Quality Assurance Standards. McColla Enterprises, Ltd., maintains specific and stringent standards for its franchisees’ store operations. One method by which these standards are enforced is by periodic store inspections by McColla Enterprises, Ltd., representatives.
a. These on-site inspections are sometimes referred to as Q & A (Quality Assurance) inspections. They generally occur on a semi-annual, or more frequent, basis and may be either announced or unannounced.
b. All franchisees must submit to the inspections. Your store employees should be advised to expect and accommodate these inspections.
c. Franchisees are expected to maintain at least the minimum compliance with McColla Enterprises, Ltd., store inspections, achieving a score of at least 70 points (out of 100 possible points) in any two (2) consecutive inspections.
d. The broad category areas for examination during the store inspections are:
(1) Beverage area;
(2) Employees – appearance, training;
(4) Store conditions; cleanliness
e. A copy of the inspection is available upon request. Many of the items addressed are in the training punch list shown as Appendix “A”.
f. Failure to achieve the minimum stated standards can be sufficient grounds for the franchisor’s termination of the Franchise Agreement. However, we make reasonable efforts, and give you the necessary feedback and suggestions, to correct such discrepancies.
3. Uniformity of Appearance/Business Identity. McColla Enterprises, Ltd. has worked diligently to create and maintain a business identity that is recognizable and respectable in malls, by large developers, and in all retail circles. This has been achieved through careful attention to a mix of store design, features, displays, products and signage that work together to make the Street Corner “store image”. McColla Enterprises, Ltd., insists that its franchisees protect and promote the Street Corner business identity, which has been established.
A review of existing operations would certainly demonstrate that Street Corner operations project a distinct, fully inventoried and readily accessible “face” to the public. The appearance of a dirty and cluttered Express store or Urban Market (an image typically associated with a city corner newsstand or bodega) has been deliberately avoided.
In fact, store designs have been upgraded to meet increasingly demanding leasing criteria. A great emphasis is placed on presenting a clean, courteous and convenient public face.
The key factors that help promote and distinguish the Street Corner theme and image are as follows:
a. Product Mix. Our stores present a typical array of items one might generally expect to be found at a Express store or Urban Market. However, the presentation is unlike a typical Express store or Urban Market with more attention given to clean, uncluttered merchandising and a higher level of store design.
Franchisees have room for some experimentation and diversity with their product offerings, but are essentially bound by lease terms (referred to as a “use clause”), which, at the very least, restrict potential sales categories and product offerings.
A typical “use clause” found in Street Corner leases is attached to this manual as Appendix “B”. It is imperative for franchisees to check the use clause, which governs their store before experimenting with products that might fall outside of allowed usage.
In any event, a franchisee’s store retail mix will include both (1) mandatory products/services and (2) discretionary products/services, described as follows:
(1) Mandatory Products/Services – Every Street Corner store must offer and market the list of products and services shown on attached Appendix “C”. There can be no variation from this list unless written permission allowing a variation is obtained from the franchisor.
(2) Discretionary Products/Services – Every Street Corner store may offer and market products and services related to the Express store or Urban Market operation that are not necessarily listed on our “Mandatory Products/Services” list, provided that:
(a) the discretionary product/service offering does not violate the lease use clause, and;
(b) provided that the franchisor approves the discretionary items in writing before they are offered as retail sales items to the public.
b. Uniforms and dress. All Street Corner staff, including salaried, management and hourly-rate employees, shall wear a standard, prescribed article of clothing or a style of dress, which the franchisor specifies as:
(1) Currently, there is a choice for staff to wear either:
(a) A black Street Corner short-sleeved or long-sleeved t-shirt with the employee’s name personalized on the back, supplied by the franchisor at franchisee’s cost, or;
(b) A Street Corner collared shirt, supplied by the franchisor at franchisee’s cost.
(c) In addition to a Street Corner t-shirt or collared shirt, a logo-embroidered apron, basball cap, and/or facemask may be worn, also supplied through the franchisor at franchisee’s cost.
(2) While no other specific article of clothing is required at this time, the following dress-related regulations for on-duty staff must be strictly enforced at all Street Corner stores:
(a) No hats other than franchisor-approved Street Corner logo-emblazoned hats);
(c) No garish or outrageous jewelry or ornamentation;
(d) No open-toed footwear;
(e) No see-through clothing;
(f) Hair should be groomed, neat and must be kept out of one’s face;
(g) No sunglasses;
(h) No clothing that exposes the employees’ torso or undergarments
c. Logo. “Street Corner” and “Street Corner Urban Market” are assumed business names which are identified to the public primarily by the commercial use of the company’s federally registered (R) logos and trademarks (TM).
(1) McColla Enterprises, Ltd. currently owns and uses our four (4) trademark versions in various renditions for name and visual identification purposes. These four (4) trademarks are fully registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office and are shown on attached Appendix “D”.
(2) Since the franchisor has received U.S. Service mark registrations for protection of the company’s logo and name, your use and operation of Street Corner and Street Corner Urban Market must promote and protect the name and logo rights, which the franchisor has acquired.
(3) The Franchise Agreement gives franchisees specific, but limited, rights to utilize the company’s logos and name for business purposes only while operating a Street Corner or Street Corner Urban Market business as a franchisee.
(4) Please be wary of attempts by unauthorized persons to exploit or misuse the company’s name and/or logos. Please report any such possible violations to the franchisor immediately.
d. Signage. Signage used throughout a franchisee’s store must be pre-approved by, or supplied by, the franchisor. This rule covers all signage, from the most basic “point of sale” sign on your countertops to large, exterior signage.
(1) Be aware that lease agreements often contain provisions that give a landlord a layer of control over tenant signage issues.
e. Major Renovations. Any renovations which involve structural changes to the walls, ceilings, floors, lighting or cabinetry of the Street Corner or Street Corner Urban Market store as originally constructed and/or operated, together with any changes to store facilities and/or equipment (including, but not limited to type and/or placement) or other substantial operational details, shall be subject to advance written approval by McColla Enterprises, Ltd.
(1) Please note that many leases contain provisions requiring the periodic updating or renovation of the design of tenant stores.
f. Inventory levels. All stores must be well-stocked at all times.
(1) Light or empty inventory sections create a very bad image for both the company and the affected store.
(2) Franchisees must keep their store shelves stocked at all times, particularly during the peak hours of the sale day.
g. Services. Depending on lease provisions, Street Corner locations may be permitted to offer and perform, for a fee, valuable services for the public, such as:
(1) Faxing or photocopy
(2) Money o0rders or check cashing
(3) Event/transportation ticket sales
(4) Others (consult your lease agreement)
h. Fixtures and equipment (kiosk vs. inline). The company can offer its Express store operations in both traditional “inline” store designs or freestanding “kiosk” store designs.
(1) Standardized fixtures and equipment. There are standardized fixtures and equipment items that are in use at all Street Corner stores. Use of these fixtures and equipment is mandatory.
(2) A list of the required fixtures and equipment for our store types is set forth on attached Appendix “E”.
(3) Any deviations from the prescribed lists must be approved in advance and in writing by the franchisor.
(4) Point-of-Sale system. We require the use of a specific electronic cash point-of-sale system. Currently, all stores utilize a state-of-the-art Aures touchscreen system or, for our large locations and fuel stations, a Gilbarco or Veriphone system
4. Safety Policy. Street Corner adheres to a basic safety concept which is grounded in the belief that the personal safety of all staff is paramount and is superior to any safety matters concerning a store’s money, inventory or physical condition. PLEASE DO NOT SACRIFICE YOUR PERSONAL SAFETY TO PROTECT THE STORE.
This manual does, however, set forth company procedure for handling other safety and security issues of concern in the operation of a Street Corner store. Franchisees are expected to handle these matters appropriately as part of their store management.
a. See Sections II.B.7, II.B.8, IV.D.3, IV.E.1 and IV.E.2 below for other items related to safety matters.