Nashville Smoothie King Franchisee Give Back Through Challenged Athletes Foundation
Last year, Smoothie King launched a sponsorship of the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) to fundraise and raise awareness to help individuals with physical challenges get access to sports and an active lifestyle. Smoothie King’s support will help fund grants for adaptive sports equipment like prosthetic running feet, hand cycles and sport wheelchairs, travel training and competition expenses (items typically not covered by insurance).
This relationship has been growing and flourishing in the past year and it’s clear how well our brands complement each other. Smoothie King’s purpose is to inspire people to live a healthy and active lifestyle, and through their work with CAF, the brand is helping athletes with physical challenges meet their sports and fitness goals every day.
Smoothie King has committed to donating 25 cents from each bottle of Hydrate and Help spring water sold in stores and has leveraged their brand awareness to facilitate direct donations. The brand aims to fund grants totaling $150,000 to challenged athletes in select Smoothie King store communities.
The brand-wide initiative has been greeted with enthusiasm by franchisees. Paul McCulloch, a Nashville-based Smoothie King franchisee, served on the on the franchisee advisory council and worked to foster the CAF relationship. He immediately loved the idea.
“It fits so well with our mission,” Paul said. “We believe in encouragement and hope, so this sponsorship started out strong through these common bonds.”
A Family Affair for Smoothie King Franchisee
Before Paul brought Smoothie King to the Nashville area, there were none for miles. Originally, Paul’s son introduced the brand to his family. His son went out of state to play college football and frequented a Smoothie King on campus. After his first experience, Paul was hooked on the business opportunity. He opened his first location in 2005 and has been growing since.
“I really saw the trends leaning towards these better-for-you, on-the-go options,” Paul said. “Overall, the mission fit really well with our lifestyle. In addition to my business experience, I knew I needed a concept I believed in, and Smoothie King was just that.”
Paul now owns 19 Smoothie Kings in the greater Nashville area, making him the largest Smoothie King operator in the market.
“I really rely on general managers and regional managers,” Paul said. “Coincidentally enough, my son is now an office manager and is very involved in the business.”
Not only has Paul worked closely with CAF since the beginning, he is also the first store to award equipment to athletes.
John Dulaney, a member of the Music City Lightning WC Basketball Team, was given a Per4Max Thunder Basketball Chair. Evan Terrell received a cash grant to enable him to travel to competitions. He plays wheelchair tennis, sled hockey, wheelchair basketball and participates in archery. Both of these talented athletes can support their healthy and active lifestyles through these donations.
“It is awesome to see these athletes get the custom equipment,” Paul said. “John is a big guy, over six feet, and I can see why specialized equipment is necessary for him.”
Paul has found various ways to get involved in his community, but he emphasizes how rewarding a brand-wide sponsorship of CAF has been for him.
“It’s a great idea to have a common cause,” Paul said. “I see how my stores can benefit the community, and I’m just one person. Imagine the combined efforts of 1,000 stores. It’s crazy the impact we can have.”
Smoothie King will continue to work towards their $150,000 goal this year and continue their strong relationship with the Challenged Athletes Foundation.