In early 2022, HURD was selected as the exclusive development firm and construction manager for the Juan Valdez® Florida market expansion program. The initial focus of the program was getting three stalled locations moving forward while evaluating all current approaches. Now heading into 2023, the future could not be brighter for the Juan Valdez brand expansion in Florida. Four new locations have already been opened, with ten more grand openings scheduled for mid-2023.
Quick Wins Increasing Speed to Market
Better Architectural and Engineering Approaches Leading to Faster Permits and Fewer Avoidable Delays
A & E presented as an immediate roadblock and opportunity for improvement. Prior to HURD’s involvement, the franchisee was struggling to orchestrate planning across multiple providers. Some providers lacked significant expertise in food service environments, and the fragmented approach was not conducive to developing a scalable statewide food service-related program. In addition, as is the case too often, the owner and incumbent architects were not communicating effectively. Too many things were getting “lost in translation,” and everything was simply taking too long. Fortunately, HURD was able to quickly introduce a new highly qualified architect to the program and professionalize the exchange of information to eliminate gaps in communication and avoid unnecessary delays. Also, given Florida’s complicated permitting and food service-related water management requirements, HURD put programmatic controls in place for all new stores to avoid common engineering-related water management and permitting delays. As an additional benefit, HURD was even able to reduce the cost of the Architectural services by leveraging the program volume with one strong, capable, and vetted provider.
Communication and Bridging the Design Gap
Although the corporate brand had strong overall design intentions and concepts, work was needed to document practical standards for each design element and introduce compliance controls across all new locations. Following best practices learned on previous statewide Florida rollouts, HURD worked with the corporate brand and franchisee to develop store templates for the various space types that would present across Florida. The result of this process is three basic store type templates, each with predefined design standards leading to consistent, streamlined, and compliant designs across all locations.
Establishing Vetted and Optimized FF&E Supply Chains
Most FF&E manufacturers offer decent pricing but deliver goods “when available” versus “when needed,” which leaves owners to struggle. Although the franchisee had identified some sources for furniture, fixtures, and equipment, significant work was needed to manage long lead times, evaluate alternatives, and find suppliers who could consolidate and distribute goods “just in time” to avoid the fixed cost and complexity of managing stored inventory. Through a professional procurement process, HURD solicited proposals from several suppliers with detailed FF&E schedules, specifications, and requirements for guarantee of supply and consolidated “just in time” deliveries. Also, by leveraging the full needs and multi-year nature of the rollout, HURD negotiated preferential pricing and significantly reduced direct and indirect FF&E cost.