Nine top franchise achievement awards were recently presented at the Freedom Boat Club National Franchise Conference, held Nov. 13 – 17 at the Hyatt Regency, Sarasota, Fla. Club owners and operators from throughout North America gathered with corporate staff and key vendors for a variety of professional development and training programs, new product launches and award recognitions.
“We are very proud of this year’s slate of top franchise performers,” said Freedom Boat Club President and CEO John Giglio. “Our franchisees are continuing to raise the bar. Their performances, both individually and collectively, are certainly impressive.”
Freedom Boat Club – Tampa Bay, owned by Glenn Bergoffen, swept four of the top national awards, including the “2016 Franchise of the Year.” Bergoffen and crew also took home the “2016 Highest Percentage of Revenue Increase” and the “2016 Territory Expansion” awards, while also being named to the franchisor’s Pacesetter Club of top performers.
Bergoffen’s organization was cited by Giglio as a “model club” featuring notable growth and financial strength, coupled with a well maintained fleet, strong marketing programs and highly satisfied club members.
Eight franchisees were recognized with the “The Pacesetter Awards” for outstanding overall performance, revenue growth and membership satisfaction. Winners included Freedom Boat Club of Tampa Bay; Freedom Boat Club of Daytona Beach/New Smyrna; Freedom Boat Club of Lake Norman, NC; Freedom Boat Club of Massachusetts; Freedom Boat Club of San Diego; Freedom Boat Club of Lake Austin/Texas; Freedom Boat Club of New York; and Freedom Boat Club North Gulf Coast.
Freedom Boat Club Chief Marketing Officer Wanda Kenton Smith presented three national marketing awards.
The “Marketer of the Year” was won by Freedom Boat Club – Lake Erie. This club experienced strong growth in 2016 thanks to a mix of targeted marketing activities and multiple new outreach initiatives including the launch of a women’s boating group and a Great Lakes marketing coalition involving other Freedom Boat Clubs. It also is actively engaged with 15-20 philanthropic organizations and contributed in-kind donations of nearly $40,000 to benefit local community partners.
The “Marketing Brand Champion” award is given to an individual who most passionately embodies and promotes the Freedom Boat Club brand. This year’s winner, Andrew Hard –Huntington Beach, Calif., launched a robust social media advertising program, hosted special events for his local chamber and other influential organizations, participated in and financially contributed to the national Freedom Boat Club Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America charitable effort, exhibited at multiple boat shows, promoted multiple membership special events, and launched a joint promotion with Fox Sports West that yielded strong radio and television coverage to a viewing audience of more than a million.
Eight Freedom Boat Clubs from throughout North America received special award recognition for their outstanding service as members of the franchisor’s National Marketing Advisory Council. Appointed members and their respective clubs recognized included Lisa Almeida – Jacksonville/St. Augustine, Fla.; Matthew Carrick – Greater Boston; Dan Hasbrouck – San Diego, Calif.; Scott Isaacks – Texas; Karen Berry – Grand Strand, S.C.; JoAnna Goldberg –Annapolis, Md.; Matthew O’Hara – Lake George, N.Y.; and Carrie Raney – Lake Erie, Ohio.
Matthew O’Hara – Freedom Boat Club Lake George, N.Y., won the “Guardian of Reciprocity” award. This award is presented to the club that most warmly welcomes and embraces “reciprocal” club members and delivers an exceptional member experience. Reciprocal membership is one of Freedom Boat Club’s major distinctions, which allows members to access boats in club locations throughout North America, above and beyond their home club location.
“We are very pleased to recognize the unprecedented performance of our top franchisees,” said Giglio. “We are very proud of the hard work and effort of our franchise family and are excited by the membership growth that has followed. It’s an exciting time for Freedom Boat Club, and we’re all very excited about our future.”