Kay and Marvin Keene, both professors, were interested in finding a franchise opportunity, so they attended the Myrtle Beach Area SBDC’s restaurant business development conference. Marvin had been researching several franchise options and at the conference, he discussed ownership styles and business models with a franchise expert. He also made an appointment to discuss his business plan with Myrtle Beach Area SBDC for private consulting.
In March, he met with Janet Graham, area manager for the Myrtle Beach Area SBDC located at Coastal Carolina University. They further researched franchise opportunities and by April, the Keenes had decided to purchase a Kona Ice franchise, which is a shaved ice refreshment company. Shaved ice is not just the Hawaiian name for a snow cone. Shaved ice has a different texture than snow cones and they come in generally larger sizes. This tropical cousin of the mainland snow cone also comes in a variety of flavors such as guava, mango, coconut and passion fruit. Specialty items include green tea, a low calorie option with vitamin C called Vita-blend and a sports blend that replaces important nutrients during hot South Carolina days.
“The Keenes are model clients and a real joy to assist,” Graham said. “They came in knowing that franchising was a viable option for them. The SBDC helped to determine the best franchising opportunity for their lifestyle and personality. The Keenes work ethic is evident in their dedication to the success of Kona Ice.”