Rejen Inc., a Spokane-based franchisee of Cartridge World Inc., has opened a new store in Coeur d'Alene, its fourth outlet in the Inland Northwest.
Pat McCord, who owns the franchise with Ben Irwin, says the company, which sells refurbished printer ink and toner cartridges, opened the Coeur d'Alene store about two months ago in 1,600 square feet of leased space at 3524 N. Government Way.
The company also plans to open a fifth store on Spokane's South Hill in the next two months. McCord says it has narrowed its search down to two leasing options along 29th Avenue on the South Hill, and it also is considering expansion into outlying areas.
In addition to the Coeur d'Alene store, the three existing Cartridge World outlets are at 506 N. Sullivan, in Spokane Valley; and at 9502 N. Newport Highway and 4407 N. Division, on Spokane's North Side.
"Sales are good," McCord says. "We're looking at other areas to expand in the Spokane-Coeur d'Alene area besides the five. There's been a big demand, so every store has been successful."
Irwin says that future expansion will likely be with slightly smaller outlets in outlying areas. "We're considering Airway Heights and Post Falls for smaller satellite stores," he adds.
Cartridge World has 14 full- and part-time employees, including Irwin and McCord, among the stores. McCord says the franchise probably will hire two additional workers once the South Hill store opens. Each store usually has between two and four employees, and the franchise also has a delivery driver for businesses.
Irwin says the franchise seeks to hire employees who have a technical aptitude, because of the work involved in servicing, cleaning, and refilling the cartridges.
"We have a lot of people who have been technicians in other fields, such as mechanics," he says.
McCord became a partner in the franchise this summer with Irwin, who first opened a Cartridge World store here in 2006. McCord says he was brought on to expand the business, with a main role to oversee business-to-business sales. Irwin is in charge of operations.
"The goal that we have is to double our sales within two years, and we're on track to do that by implementing these two new stores and then increasing business sales," McCord says.
Business revenue has grown substantially in the past two to three years, Irwin says. He says the franchise saw 11 to 12 percent revenue growth for 2010 compared with 2009, and about 15 percent revenue growth for 2009 over 2008.
Cartridge World sells refurbished ink and toner cartridges that are less expensive than new, unused printer cartridges. Customers who exchange used cartridges when buying new ones receive deeper discounts.
McCord estimates that the stores have about 1,000 regular customers, with about half of those being individual retail customers and the other half being businesses.
The U.S. headquarters of Cartridge World Inc. is based in Spring Grove, Ill. Globally, Cartridge World says on its website that it has more than 1,700 franchised retail locations in 60 countries.
Subscribe today to our free E-Newsletters!SUBSCRIBE