Carving out a New Category in the Petcare Industry
PetWellClinic Franchisees See Wide-Open Market for Concept that Breaks the Standard Model of Vet Visits
More and more pet owners have a bone to pick with the traditional model of veterinary medicine: They’re fed up with waiting weeks for an appointment to get their beloved cat or dog preventative care, and with having nowhere to turn but expensive emergency hospitals when Fido or Fifi has a more immediate need.
As has been unfolding in the human healthcare environment, where those who historically headed in droves to hospital emergency rooms now favor walk-in clinics that can treat them on-demand, pet care is experiencing an evolution as well. Pet owners are pouring into convenient walk-in veterinary clinics where they can get their dog or cat convenient, affordable care in a matter of minutes.
PetWellClinic has been on the leading edge of this paradigm change since it launched in 2009. The company offers quick, convenient walk-in care for cats and dogs, with services ranging from exams, vaccinations, and laboratory testing, to treatment of minor ailments and management of chronic conditions. The concept was created by Dr. Sam Meisler, DVM, an MBA and practicing vet in East Tennessee, with time-crunched, price-conscious pet owners in mind. PetWellClinic places three factors above all else – the scheduling limitations of the pet owner, the health of the pet and the overall experience of both. Clients come in when it’s most convenient to them, pay for services before they are administered, receive a straightforward explanation of costs, and keep their pets in sight at all times. It’s a formula that keeps both tails and tongues wagging.
“We built our brand around client choice and both transparency and affordability in pricing,” says Dr. Meisler. “If we can do the simple things well and efficiently, we can make most of the conditions pets suffer from affordable to treat.”
An increasing number of investors – some wild about pets and others simply attuned to a great opportunity – see the emerging field of affordable walk-in veterinary care as a wide-open space with great growth potential over the next few decades as the pet-owning public is increasingly driven by a desire to live life on their own schedules. The pet services category is expected to perform at a higher rate of growth than any other sector within the pet industry over the next decade, with anticipations that its valuation will increase 143% by 2030 to $118 billion. As consumers continue to prioritize their furry friends, PetWellClinic will only become a more lucrative investment opportunity.
Joshua Kovacs is Chief Executive Officer of Oakscale, the franchise development arm for PetWellClinic throughout the United States. He and several investor partners also own the rights to develop PetWellClinic franchises throughout New Jersey, and will soon debut their third location there. He says PetWellClinic appeals to both individuals seeking a new business industry and those in service-oriented businesses wanting to tap into a category with significant growth potential.
“PetWellClinic has landed on the perfect consumer and franchise formula to ensure owners get pets the care they need when they need it, and that franchisees can get into the pet care business with the support they need,” he says.
In northeastern Massachusetts, Jeff Bezer, a corporate finance executive, is preparing to open his first PetWellClinic location early next year, part of a three-unit development agreement he signed last year. He says he found new pet owners have to wait as long as three months to see a vet in his area, so the opening of a PetWellClinic location will bring faster, on-demand pet wellness services to the Methuen, MA market.".
“There are a lot of vet practices in the area, and I called around to see how busy they were,” Bezer says. “You’re typically looking at a one- to three-month wait to get in if you’re a new patient. There’s a good opportunity for us to pick up the demand for dealing with less serious issues, to unload some of that burden off them.”
Another multi-unit developer who dove into the veterinary franchise space with PetWellClinic last year, Anthony Pistilli, operates several Goldfish Swim School franchises in the Philadelphia area. He and his Goldfish partners, Greg and Alexandra DeRise, signed a five-unit franchise agreement for the area and opened their first location earlier this year.
"Finding a good veterinarian is hard. Getting in to see them is even harder. We’re excited to operate a concept that gives pet owners immediate on-demand access to the health care their pets need,” says Pistilli.
As pet ownership continues to rise, the need for quality pet healthcare will only increase. What PetWellClinic offers beyond the traditional veterinary model is more convenient access to that much-needed healthcare. PetWellClinic gives control over the scheduling of their pet’s care back to the pet owner. Kovacs says the steady build to sustained business makes PetWellClinic an exciting opportunity.
“As a population, we continue to have more pets and less time in our lives,” he says. “We love businesses that build over a long period of time as opposed to those that may have lines out the door at the start but then struggle to keep clients coming in over time.”
The PetWellClinic model is also a practical option for veterinarians and veterinary assistants looking for a new career with a sustainable workload. The clinics offer 8-hour work days and simplified primary care services, meaning no more overnight or double-shifts and no more complex procedures with a workload veterinarians may take home with them. Each PetWellClinic location also utilizes a proven veterinary software program created by Dr. Meisler to run seamlessly and maximize efficiency.
PetWellClinic is a walk-in veterinary clinic, providing excellent preventative, wellness and sick care for dogs and cats on an on-demand basis. There is no need for an appointment because PetWellClinic’s technology, design, and operational systems provide pet parents with a modern-day experience in an antiquated industry. PetWellClinic recently began franchising after the success of its company-owned operations in Knoxville, Tennessee, and currently has over 100 units in development.
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