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Planet Beach looking to expand in Europe

Anyone who thinks tanning salons are a thing of the past should think again. Planet Beach, a New Orleans-based company has combined a day spa and a masseuse with its traditional tanning operation and is now planning to expand in Europe.

Planet Beach Salon Contempo Spas already has more than 380 locations, primarily in the United States, and almost all of its stores are franchises. Planet Beach started out with a focus on tanning, but now offers day-spa treatments, too. Perhaps the most unusual aspect of the Planet Beach concept is that all of the services are performed without the touch of a human hand. At Planet Beach, machines do all of the work. The company offers several tanning options, with or without UV, several types of massages and even a facial, and all are fully automated. Furthermore, the spas also sell a complete line of skin-care products.

Unlike many companies, Planet Beach allows multiple franchisees within a market, but it prefers to sell at least a "five-pack" (five stores to one owner) within a region to a single franchisee. Franchise owners usually prefer to have an exclusive territory to have control of the brand. The company also has an extensive training and follow-up program with the equipment doing most of the work once the business is up and running. (kbp)

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