Building Futures One Family at a Time
TIME LINE 1999
The company receives its first recognition as one of the Top 500 Franchises in the country (Entrepreneur Magazine).
Learning Express Founder and CEO Sharon DiMinico begins developing a business plan for an innovative franchise.
The first corporate store opens in Needham, Massachusetts. The Learning Express home office sets up shop with three employees in a historic schoolhouse.
The home office support team grows to 10 employees.
Learning Express is the largest family of specialty toy stores in the U.S.A. with over 30 corporate employees and 150 stores nationwide.
1984 1987 Sharon chairs the Board of Directors at the Groton Community School in Massachusetts and opens the first Learning Express store to raise revenue for the school without raising tuition.
1990 The first franchised Learning Express store opens in Andover, Massachusetts.
1998 Learning Express opens its 100th store, hosts its first company convention, and moves to a new office building.
How We Think
At Learning Express we pride ourselves on the quality and uniqueness of our toy selectionâ€”a mix of products that foster a love of learning through play. We focus on providing a fun and friendly shopping environment and a knowledgeable staff that can offer expert advice to anyone looking for the perfect toy. We also strive to be an integral part of the communities where we are located. Participation in fundraising campaigns for schools and civic organizations makes each of our stores a hub of activity and a cherished part of the neighborhood. Verona, NJ
How We Do It We have built our award-winning system by blending the power of a proven business concept with the entrepreneurial energy of our franchisees. When you become a Learning Express franchisee you gain access to a comprehensive array of expertise, support, services, and buying power designed to increase your success and profitability. This includes an experienced team to take you through every step of your grand opening process; an extensive program of ongoing training; an in-house marketing, graphics and PR department; a robust website with the option to sell toys online; a rich company intranet to share information and ideas with fellow store owners; and a consistent focus on metrics, which provide you with solid information on which products and marketing investments contribute the most to your bottom line. Additionally, the Learning Express buying department is dedicated to providing product recommendations and negotiating prices and terms with hundreds of vendors on the behalf of 150 stores. The power of this is evident from the time you open your store – the discounts, free products, and free displays associated with your opening order more than offset the initial franchise fee.
Awards & Membership • Franchise Business Review Top 50 Franchisee Satisfaction Award (2009, 2010, 2011) • Franchise Business Review Franchisee Satisfaction Award “Best in Category” (2009, 2011) • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) • Women in Toys Retailer Award (2007) )
How Our Franchisees Feel
“I have been a Learning Express store owner for the past nine years, and I am amazed how our company has embraced and been ahead of the many changes in our industry. Our corporate team has been on the cutting edge with social media, advertising, marketing, and hot new trends in product. They are always available to help and assist the store owners at all levels.” Donna Flick, Store Owner Saucon Valley and King of Prussia, PA
“Learning Express has delivered everything they said they would and more in the eighteen years we have owned our stores. We’ve always felt that we’ve been part of a family devoted to growing our business and supporting the community. The ‘LE way’continues to grow stronger. We look forward to investing in more stores in the future.” Greg, Paul and Matt Sahagian, Store Owners Needham, Acton, Sudbury and Beverly, MA
“I have been part of the toy industry and Learning Express for fifteen years. If I had the opportunity to do it all over again, I would choose Learning Express.” William Meredith, Store Owner Cary, Durham and Raleigh, NC
“From our earliest contact with the Learning Express team we have experienced a deep commitment from the wonderful staff at the corporate headquarters to our success. We could not imagine trying to open a business without the support of the franchise behind us. To this day, we know we have people behind us who truly care about our success as part of the Learning Express family.” Jimmy and Christy Myers, Store Owners Rye, NY
“I love that I can email all LE stores about something I need help with, feedback on, or just complain about and instantly receive a wide range of responses from friends who, in the spirit of community and support, answer my questions, provide their own experience and help me remember why I’m in this business after all and especially why I own a Learning Express store, I am thrilled to be part of this franchise!” Mary Theriot, Store Owner Austin, TX
C o m e Play with Us! If you have an entrepreneurial spirit; a love of toys, kids, and community; then you have what it takes to be a great Learning Express franchise owner. We would love to hear from you!
800-436-8697 f ra nc hi s e @l e a r ni ng ex p re s s. co m
2 9 B u e na Vi s t a Street â€˘ D evens, MA 01434
Our success is based on an award-winning system ... blending the power of a proven business concept with the entrepreneurial energy of our f...