Gymboree Play & Music runs a system of franchised early childhood development centers. At these centers, parents and their children ages 0-5 participate in specially designed play programs. A variety of classes include activities appropriate for each stage of development, at 6- month increments. Gymboree spaces contain play structures and equipment tailored to promote safe play and developmental needs. Gymboree centers aim to promote childhood social and cognitive skills, as well as to create a community of involved parents who benefit from the parent education materials provided. The centers also sell toys that encourage creative play, sourced from select vendors. Gymboree Play & Music is a separate entity from the children's clothing retailer.
Gymboree Play & Music is an established business with over 800 locations throughout the world. It has developed and honed its unique approach to developmental play over a period spanning 40 years. The company has carved out a niche and a specific target demographic, and has developed a solid reputation and name recognition in this area. The Gymboree approach centers the child's experience and develops programs that balance play and education that engages children's interest and stimulates development.
Gymboree provides initial and ongoing support for its franchisees. Owners throughout the world are part of the network of franchisees. The company provides substantial training for owners and key personnel. It also furnishes materials such as lesson plans, manuals, designs and proprietary software. Gymboree has built solid relationships with third-party vendors such as Melissa & Doug; franchisees may purchase items such as toys and books for retail sale at a discounted rate.
Operating a Gymboree Play & Music center entails an estimated initial investment ranging from $120,000 to $277,000, including the franchising fee of $45,000 for a Play & Music center and $35,000 for a Metro Center. Gymboree offers a discount on the franchising fee for additional centers an owner opens. International franchising can entail an investment of up to $500,000, or even higher.
In addition to possessing the necessary funds, potential franchisors will benefit from possessing some business experience and knowledge as they develop the site, purchase inventory and participate in advertising. Passion about early childhood education is also key to success in operating a Gymboree center.
Training And Support
Training is offered, and the franchisor also makes available guidelines, lesson plans, manuals and advertising templates.
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