Profiles in Franchising II

by Toni Jakovec

franchise-development-teamAs the corporate re-structuring of vomFASS settles into a nice rhythm, we are profiling the Franchise Development Team, which has remained intact as the shift to German leadership progresses.

This enterprising team continues to open new territories and bring the exciting European-style oil and vinegar concept to America.  We last focused Funding and Banking.  Following this theme, we will speak to vomFASS experts in Real Estate this week and Design next week.


The team of Russell Sagmoen and Westin Kane of Colliers International specialzes in commercial retail properties as well as corporate and tenant representation.

Toni Jakovec:  Russell, would you please explain what role you play in the franchising process?

franchise-sales-teamRuss Sagmoen:  The first step in the process takes place after the prospect has decided on a market area and we start our research to find a local realtor with the necessary expertise to help the prospect find the perfect location.  At Experience Day we educate the prospect on the importance of local demographics and ultimately take on the role of “go between” for the local realtor and vomFASS.  This streamlines the process considerably.  We  educate that local realtor on the vomFASS brand and encourage the broker to visit a vomFASS shop to better understand the brand.  We also send the local realtor an information pack telling the vomFASS story and illustrating with a variety of pictures of successful locations.

TJ:  You mentioned demographics.  What exactly are you looking for?

RS: The demographics for vomFASS center on college educated customers in middle to high income neighborhoods.  Another important factor is co-tenancy.  In this case we would recommend retail neighbors specializing in gourmet foods, cooking supply stores and quality grocery stores.  Desirable co-tenants would include Whole Foods; Penzey’s Spices; Sur la Table; Trader Joe’s and the like.  This information is invaluable to the local realtor to aid in finding the most advantageous location.  It is at this point that we facilitate the introduction of the prospect to the local realtor.

TJ:  Once that introduction has been made, what role do you play?

RS:  We stay very hands-on during this time.  We maintain an active role with the prospect and the local realtor and continue our communication with vomFASS through progress reports.

TJ:  In your capacity as real estate representatives for vomFASS, what advantages do you bring to the local realtor?

RS:  Since we have been doing this for several years now, we have encountered all of the usual complications and can bring those to the attention of the local realtor before they become an issue.  Some of those concerns include signage; lease modifications to accommodate the franchise agreement; liquor licensing and specific vomFASS requirements that may not be common in a regular lease.  We can educate the local realtor to these concerns and hopefully avoid any complications in the process.

TJ:  Do you have any comments about the restructuring of vomFASS?

RS:  From what I can tell, this restructuring will actually benefit the company by streamlining some of the processes through a more systematic and uniform approach.  Of course, every franchise brings its own unique complications, but with Thomas’ (Kiderlen: TK Francise Operations, President; former CEO of VOM FASS AG) background we have the advantage of his unique perspective and expertise.  I think the restructuring is exciting in that it brings fresh and new ideas to the brand as well as Thomas’ incomparable experience.


Last minute tickets to the game? Alayne has a lot of experience using vomFASS products to make quick and easy dishes for tailgate enjoyment.

Alayne’s Lazy Caprese Salad 



  1. Gently combine first 7 ingredients; arrange on serving platter.
  2. Immediately before serving, drizzle with 1T. (or more!) vomFASS Aceto Balsamico Maletti Vinegar. Enjoy!

Recipe may be doubled or tripled



See Cooking Videos

Disclaimer: This information is not intended as an offer to sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy, a franchise. It is for information purposes only. Currently, the following states in the United States regulate the offer and sale of franchises: California, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. If you are a resident of one of these states, we will not offer you a franchise unless and until we have complied with applicable pre-sale registration and disclosure requirements in your jurisdiction.