vomFASS Des Moines
Melissa Bartholomew’s decision to become a vomFASS franchise partner has, in many ways, brought her right back to where she started. “I’d worked in corporate America for many years managing the web presence for a well known financial institution. I had another franchise before that—a technology company back during the ‘Internet bubble.’ Before that I worked in healthcare technology. Finally, before that, retail. It’s really been full circle for me. I started with retail and now I’m back in retail.”
Before she owned a vomFASS franchise store, Melissa had been leading a professional life familiar to other future partners: all-day meetings and phone calls, often with individuals in altogether different parts of the country.
“By the time I left, we’d stopped having in-person meetings—I was literally on the phone for 9-10 hours each day. It got old.”
Wanting to return to business with a more personalized touch—and on her own terms—Melissa began researching franchise opportunities among four different companies. Then, she visited the flagship vomFASS store in Madison.
“When I went into the store, I fell in love with the products and visual appeal. I thought vomFASS was completely unique and a great fit for Des Moines.”
It was. In only a year, Des Moines has quickly embraced vomFASS, including the local press.
“I didn’t really have to reach out the press,” says Melissa. “They reached out to me. That really helped get the word out in the beginning.” Early press coverage helped build excitement for a store that was, at the time, a unique concept for Des Moines.
But it wouldn’t be unique for long. Since its launch, vomFASS Des Moines has become part of a gourmet community that now includes specialty stores like bakeries and small teashops. “We’ve become kind of a ‘foodie’ destination.”
Melissa’s experience offers valuable lessons for those looking into the franchise.
So, how has Melissa’s life changed since opening her vomFASS? “I’m probably less stressed. I almost hate to say that as a business owner, but it’s true. I no longer deal with the bureaucracy of a large-scale institution. I don’t miss that.