Big Blue Swim School might be all about building life’s big moments in the water—but the premier swim instruction brand is experiencing some blazing franchise growth.
Founded by National Champion swimmer Chris DeJong in 2009, swim instruction brand Big Blue Swim School claims a recession-resistant offering. That approach caught the eye of multi-brand franchisee and private equity group Level 5 Capital Partners, who acquired a stake in Big Blue in January 2017 to support the brand’s growth through franchising. Since then, Illinois-based Big Blue has more than staked its claim within the lucrative swim instruction industry, establishing an ever-growing footprint with points of presence in strategic markets including Raleigh, New Jersey, Florida, Atlanta, Denver, Salt Lake City, Minneapolis, and Chicago—recently developed with an impressive 10-unit deal.
So where does the brand stand today in terms of swim school franchise development?
“We currently have five open corporate and 50 sold franchise locations across 13 states,” said Big Blue Swim School’s Chief Development Officer, Scott Thompson. “We have an amazing group of franchise partners and are consistently seeing those new to the brand purchasing multiple units.”
Big Blue Swim School CEO Chris Kenny echoed Thompson’s emphasis on the continued interest of multi-unit franchise partners.
“As a brand in total, we just accomplished the 50-unit mark in less than a year. We have 100 to go between now and the end of 2021, which is 26 months. Our education franchise development team is hard at work on that. Every Dive-in Day is bringing in between 5 to 10 buying groups, and they’re typically buying multiple units, so we’re feeling pretty confident in our franchise development goal in units awarded.”
Indeed, one such example is that of husband-and-wife team Zack and Brittany Groesbeck, who signed a three-unit deal with Big Blue earlier this year to bring the brand to Salt Lake City and have plans to eventually take over the entire Utah market. The two embody one of several investor types well-aligned to Big Blue’s best-in-class offering: families who are passionate about children’s water safety.
“The No. 1 cause of accidental death in kids under 10 is drowning. And so, for us, we thought, ‘Let’s be part of the solution,’” shared Zack. Furthermore, explained Brittany, “The confidence kids learn at the pool applies to the rest of their lives. We love that Big Blue truly teaches transferable, necessary life skills.”
Big Blue’s white-hot fitness franchise growth can also be attributed to another type of investor as well: semi-absentee franchise partners looking to maximize their time and their capital. Thanks to LessonBuddy™, the brand’s proprietary lesson planning and scheduling software, Big Blue investors can track costs, efficiencies and volume for data-driven transparency in terms of their ROI. Furthermore, according to Thompson, “LessonBuddy™ allows families to reschedule lessons at the touch of a button” which optimizes the business by filling gaps left by rescheduled or cancelled lessons.
Ultimately, for any and all Big Blue investors, the brand leverages a robust pre-opening marketing strategy to generate brand buzz and contribute to a healthy number of memberships sold before opening. This allows franchisees to hit the ground running, scale quickly across multiple units and, ultimately, contribute to Big Blue’s white-hot franchise growth.
So what do you get when you combine industry-redefining technology, growth-oriented most profitable franchise partners and the insight of an expert leadership team? Big Blue Swim School.
Multi-unit franchise opportunities are available for qualified candidates looking for their next big opportunity, and veterans can receive a 10 percent discount on the $50,000 franchise fee. The total investment for one Big Blue Swim School ranges from $1,825,500 to $3,687,000. To learn more or inquire about Big Blue Swim School, visit