Carmelo Marsala went from owning a student paint franchise to starting his own paint franchise – Spray-Net – at 23, after earning his Bachelor of Commerce Degree from Concordia University's John Molson School of Business.
According to Marsala, Spray-Net is the most cost-effective way to increase property value and beautify a home.
"Using our proprietary line of industrial-strength coatings and patented application processes, we renew and transform existing surfaces that most people think can’t be painted but, instead, replaced," he said. "We revamp and transform aluminum and vinyl siding; stucco; brick; front and garage doors; aluminum and vinyl windows; asphalt shingled rooves and all types of kitchen cabinets.
"In just one day, we deliver a permanent, factory finish that won’t peel and that looks just like-new, not repainted," Marsala continued. "We’ve taken the process of factory painting and we’ve optimized it for application outside the controlled environment of the factory. By bringing factory results directly on-site, we give property owners a real alternative to replacement. The cost of our solution, representing a small fraction of total property value, is immediately outweighed by the increase in curb appeal and overall property value. Unlike some renovations that don’t pay off, our renovation solution allows property owners to literally see a return on their investment."
He said Spray-Net has transformed more than 15,000 homes across Canada, and, "We’re happy to now offer our unique solution to homeowners in the US."
Marsala was recently named the winner of the 2020 NextGen in Franchising Global All-Star Competition at this year’s International Franchise Association Convention.
Every year at its annual convention, the International Franchise Association hosts a competition for top emerging franchise brands.
In front of convention attendees and a panel of franchise executives, each emerging brand must pitch about how it is helping to change the face of franchising.
According to Marsala, this year, previous winners came together to pitch yet again, "This time about how their businesses are planning to overcome the biggest challenges coming their way in the next five years."
He is also one of 65 entrepreneurs from around the globe participating in the Entrepreneurial Master's Program at MIT.
Certified in Coating Technology and Formulation by the Coatings Institute of Missouri and the Chicago Society for Coatings Technology, Marsala spearheads R&D and the strategic vision for the expanding franchise network.
What sets Spray-Net apart from competitors, per Marsala, is its Formulation to Application business model.
"We go from Formulation to Application, cutting out all the middlemen in the process. This allows us to formulate our own line of high-performance coatings at a cost-effective price for homeowners," he said. "By cutting out the middleman, we’re able to reinvest the savings into our proprietary paint chemistry, providing our customers with a superior quality finish that transforms the look of their homes and increases property value. Our signature factory finish provides all of the benefits of a replacement, for a fraction of the cost and in a fraction of the time."
Like other business owners, Marsala has had to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Our sales process is entirely based on face-to-face contact with homeowners at their homes. While we’ve always envisioned digitizing our sales process, our team had to put this plan into action much sooner due to the outbreak of COVID-19," he said. "Instead of at-home consultations, we are now offering homeowners virtual quotes via our website. By simply uploading pictures of their homes and providing us with basic project details, customers can safely and comfortably receive a price for their projects.
"As most areas in Canada and the US are now reaching their infection peaks, we’re now starting to see a gradual re-opening of the economy," he continued. "While we believe we will be able to soon continue our operations throughout the summer season, our corporate team is now ensuring that our franchise partners are equipped with the information they need to help protect both their workers and customers as they plan to resume production."
In addition to launching a brand-new sales process, Spray-Net launched a new digital marketing campaigns that reflect the current COVID-19 climate.
"We’ve invested into bulking up our franchise development resources to provide candidates with more in-depth information about our franchise offering, as franchise sales should coincide with the economic uptake expected after COVID-19," Marsala said, "and we are providing our existing franchisees with extensive training resources to help them optimize their new sales process and prepare for new on-site safety regulations and much more."
Franchisees are former hockey players, firefighters and those from all different walks of life, according to the company website.
Photos courtesy Spray-Net