Should I Buy an Indoor Paintball Franchise?

Indoor Paintball Franchise

The big question that faces everyone thinking of opening a business, is; “Should I go and do it on my own, or should I buy an indoor paintball franchise?”

Truthfully, there are advantages to both. If doing it on your own, you have complete control of what you want the business to be. With a paintball franchise, the paintball franchisor sets down rules, included in the Paintball Franchise Disclosure Documents and the Paintball Franchise Owners Manual, on aspects of what you can and can’t do with your business. So you need to decide, do you like the model of the paintball franchise, and can operate within the parameters they set, or are you a “go it on your own” type of personality.

One way to look at it is a Paintball Franchise is like guard rails on your road to business success. Some franchises those rails are pretty narrow. You will have virtually no leeway in running your business. Some will set hiring practices, pricing, days and hours you need to be open, what promotions you are allowed to run, what products you can sell, etc. Others are more flexible and will let you set your own pricing, etc, but will guide you on how the business should be run.

Companies offering franchises don’t really make much (if any) money from you buying a franchise. A franchise fee may be $25,000 or so, but most that is absorbed by the franchisor in costs of marketing, paper work, training, etc. The franchisors goal is for the franchisee to make a successful business, as a Franchisee will pay about 6-8% (or more) of their gross sales to the franchisor. With this model, it makes it to where the franchisor really wants their Franchisee’s to be successful.

Here at GatSplat, we had so many people visit our facility and ask if we had a franchise option available, we went and created the GatSplat paintball franchise model and documents. You can read more about the franchise at

Paintball Franchise - indoor paintball franchise plan

I doubt a day goes by that I don’t talk to someone who wants to open a field, and tells me that they really don’t need to have a paintball franchise because they have been in the paintball industry for years, have played tournaments all over the country. Maybe they even worked at a field for a while. In perspective, that is like saying someone is qualified to open a restaurant because they have been eating for years, and worked as a waiter in a restaurant for a while. That does not equate to business experience that will allow you to run a successful business.

The question that you really need to ask, is if you feel it would be beneficial to have a road map for a proven business model, including all aspects from determining the proper location after analyzing the Demographics, assistance with the architectural design, someone assisting you with calculating pricing, payroll, margins, marketing, web design, bookings, and all the other important aspects of day to day running of a business to maximize profits. How much extra profits could a business see if they have a comprehensive training course on how to run their business, and mentors to turn to to help with all aspects of the business?

A properly run business in the right area can bring in fantastic profits. A poorly run business can wipe out someone’s savings in the matter or a year or two. Making the decision to go it on your own, or consider a Paintball Franchise is one of those decisions you will have to make on your own.  But I have to be honest:

In the last few years, I’ve had several people talk to me about doing a franchise – and some have decided to do it on their own.  I watched one close their doors 9 months after opening.  I had another call me to ask if they could change their mind and do a franchise after the fact – but they had made so many mistakes in the finish out of their facility, I explained it would cost them more now than before to try to switch it over to a GatSplat Franchise. Even ones that are doing ok, have met up with me at a show and admitted they would have saved a lot of money and anguish if they would have gone the franchise route.

I think my expertise and experience is worth way more than what you will end up paying to do a GatSplat franchise – we have the system down pretty good. We know how to maximize the profitability of the model with over 10 years experience being open and running 3 locations.

Realistically, an indoor field is not like an outdoor field with a roof on it.  It’s like thinking that you are an accomplished cross country skier so you may as well try ski jumping.  Yes.. they both use poles and skis, but there is a world or difference.

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