- Sometimes there's nothing more difficult than relocating to a new state and putting down roots. Throwing in the dynamic of opening one's own business would seem to double the anxiety, but the idea hasn't seemed to faze one of McKinney's newest (literally) entrepreneurs.
On May 10, 49-year-old Jeff Thwing opened the doors to Experimac, a one-of-a-kind retail storefront concept that specializes in sales of pre-owned Apple® computers and devices; repair of laptops, phones and tablets; trade-ins of existing devices; and sales of accessories. Experimac is located at 2960 Eldorado Parkway, serving customers in McKinney and its neighboring communities.
Thwing and his family have only lived in McKinney since late 2013 after relocating from Ohio.
"We moved here for my last employer, but the strong feeling of community in McKinney is keeping us here and starting a new business instead of moving back to Ohio," Thwing said. "Plus, when we found that we could build our store within our own community, it really sealed things for us."
Most recently working as an Internal Management Consultant, Thwing said he has always placed a strong focus on customer service and believes that will serve him well as an Experimac franchise owner, especially since it meshes so well with one of his other traits.
"Our mission at Experimac is to create customers for life and that is something I have always believed in," Thwing said. "And I have always played a technical role in my jobs, even if the job description did not require it. Combining a passion for tinkering with technology and delivering a positive customer experience will give us an edge."
Thwing is hoping to meet a strong need for area consumers. The technology sector is obviously booming. In 2014, about 302 million computers were sold worldwide, generating about $304 billion in sales revenue. At the same time, nearly seven billion cell phone subscriptions were purchased worldwide by May 2014, nearly one for every person on the planet.
Since Experimac specializes in selling used products, particularly used Apple® products, the products can be sold at a price point that is accessible to a much-wider range of customers. When customers enter competing retail stores that sell new computers, smart phones and tech equipment, only one out of every 100 or so people actually purchase something because of the high price point, but they are much more likely to buy at Experimac.
Experimac customers typically enjoy average savings of 60 percent on pre-owned Apple® products over big-box retailers. And Experimac takes the risk out of purchasing pre-owned equipment with a 90-day guarantee. If something breaks, Experimac will repair or replace the defective part at no cost.
"The biggest trend I see in the industry is how personal devices such as tablets and smart phones are being used in so many different areas by such a wide variety of users," Thwing said. "In addition, advances in solid state hard-drive technology are making it so much easier to store and retrieve large amounts of data."
Thwing said his family will also play a role in the new business, with his wife, Kim, putting her human resources and operations knowledge to work behind the scenes and daughters, Jessica and Rebecca, also contributing.
"Of course, I will be tasking our social media exposure to Rebecca, our youngest, since she is most familiar with those methods," Thwing said with a smile.
Experimac is the latest addition to the United Franchise Group family of brands, joining a team with over 30 years of franchise experience. Capitalizing on a sustained demand for Apple® products, Experimac provides pre-owned computers and devices, repair of laptops, phones and tablets, trade-ins of existing devices, sales of accessories and upgrades. Experimac has 25 locations nationwide. For more information visit www.experimacfranchise.com
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Jeff Thwing, with wife Kim and daughters Jessica and Rebecca, owner of Experimac McKinney[/caption]