‘Prospects Are Freaking Out’ Over This Iced Tea Franchise | Franchise Information


HTeaO sells Texas-sized cups of freshly brewed iced tea in 24 completely different flavors.

Texas chai, peach ginger, mango fresco and candy mint are only a handful of the flavors supplied by iced tea franchise HTeaO, which is betting its brewed drinks will stand out within the rising specialty beverage class.

“We’re the primary to market, we’re forward of a development, we’re the one ones doing it,” stated CEO Justin Howe. “The shoppers are freaking out, they usually have been for over a decade.”

Howe is the son of co-founders Gary and Kim Hutchens, who flipped what began with six flavors of iced tea they known as Texas Tea and served at their burger restaurant, Buns Over Texas, into a wholly new enterprise.

The drinks have been such successful Buns Over Texas started drawing clients purely with its tea choices. In 2009, the Hutchenses took the Texas Tea title and opened a separate retailer, and in 2012 they partnered with Howe to take the model nationwide. In 2018, what grew to become HTeaO opened with its first retailer in Midland, Texas.

“The product high quality is thru the roof,” stated Howe. HTeaO sells freshly brewed, massive cups of iced tea, which might be custom-made with 24 completely different flavors and ranges of sweetness—and are available in Texas-sized quantities. The model’s small dimension is 24 ounces and the most important dimension is 44 ounces. Gallon and half-gallon jugs are additionally out there.


Bryan Benson owns three shops in Texas.

“It’s not a syrup-based drink like every part else that you just get at each different location, anyplace you go,” Howe stated. The corporate as a substitute makes use of cane sugar and pure flavorings. Howe’s favourite is a basic: unsweetened tea with lemon.

Howe brings an extended and assorted historical past to the corporate, beginning when he was a teen working in eating places and in development, two companies with household ties. At 17, he’d already based a garden mowing enterprise and a snow cone stand, which he operated outdoors his household’s restaurant and employed 9 individuals. He later went to highschool to grow to be a pilot, then based a granite countertop fabrication firm in addition to an plane administration firm in 2001. He went on to construct and managed properties earlier than getting again right into a household enterprise.

HTeaO had 63 places open as of November 2022 in Texas, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Florida, and 83 extra in development within the southern United States.

Franchisee Bryan Benson owns three HTeaO models in San Angelo, Texas. He was the model’s first franchisee in 2019, and he was eager about proudly owning his personal location about 18 months earlier than HTeaO was franchising. “We simply thought, ‘Hey, man, that is cool. This can be a cool vibe, it’s a cool atmosphere,’” Benson stated.

Benson and his accomplice now have three extra models within the works. “They’ve all been doing superb,” he stated about his current three shops.


Justin Howe

HTeaO will signal multi-unit offers, however many of the 400 franchises it’s offered are to single-unit operators, Howe stated. “We do multi-unit offers with a really intentional rollout, the place we’ll allow them to do a restricted quantity of shops to start with,” he stated.

To accommodate the anticipated growth, Howe has a “strong” infrastructure in place with HTeaO’s 40-plus full-time workers. HTeaO has its personal warehouses, vans and drivers, which minimizes the availability chain points many manufacturers are struggling to deal with.

“We don’t simply drop the pallet off,” Howe stated. “We now have drivers that really care about promoting product within the retailer.”

As for goal-setting, Howe doesn’t prefer to look long run. “I don’t have a five-year imaginative and prescient,” he stated. “Our targets are primarily based on the unit-level financial help, which means that if we now have a retailer that opens in an space that hasn’t overcome obscurity with the model, then our targets are to help these models.”

The funding required to open an HTeaO retailer ranges from $235,200 to $1.6 million. A meals truck location prices $511,800 to $1.9 million and a non-traditional venue is $77,500 to $124,000. The royalty price is 6 p.c of product sales. Sometimes, shops require about 2,000 sq. ft with a drive-thru and a T-shaped bar.