Mail Boxes Etc. (MBE), a UPS® company, is the world’s largest franchisor of retail shipping, postal and business services. Headquartered in San Diego, CA, MBE boasts more than 4,000 independently owned locations around the world. The global leader in its industry, MBE provides convenient and value-added business services to general consumers, corporate “road warriors” and the small-office/home-office (SOHO) market.
Products and Services
Most MBE locations offer a full range of business and communications services, including, but not limited to:
- packing services
- shipping through UPS, FedEx®, DHL® and USPS®
- office/packing supplies
- mailbox services
- mail receiving and forwarding
- black & white and color copying
- laminating, binding, collating, faxing
- notary services
MBE offers corporations and e-commerce companies a cost-effective national distribution system to deliver products and business services to their customers. Representative accounts include: Agilent Technologies™, Hewlett-Packard®, IKON Office Solutions®, Konica®, Motorola®, Samsung®, Thomson Consumer Electronics™, Qwest® and Xerox®.
Global Mail Box Express (GMBE) offers international consumers the opportunity to shop online and through catalogs in the United States and have their merchandise shipped to them in numerous countries.
Since its inception in 1980, MBE has grown in quantum leaps. Along the way, it has continued to define and lead the business services category it created. MBE hit the 1,000 franchise locations mark in 1990 and quickly expanded to twice that number by 1993, leaving its competitors far behind, as it has throughout its history. Today, MBE has more than 3,000 franchised locations in the U.S.
Special venues site development also has grown steadily in the past few years. MBE locations are opening in airports, universities, military bases, convention centers, hotels, and in urban renewal areas and empowerment zones. Special venues sites give MBE the opportunity to provide its services to consumers, regardless of where they live, work or travel.
In addition to its domestic network, MBE has expanded globally through master license agreements in nearly 80 countries. In 2002, MBE celebrated the opening of its 1,000th franchised location operating outside the United States. Historically, the services provided by MBE have been adaptable to the needs and market conditions of various countries and cultures around the world.
Today, on average, one new MBE location opens every business day somewhere in the world, making MBE one of the worlds fastest-growing franchise companies. Accordingly, MBE is seven times larger than its largest competitor and nearly three times larger than its five largest competitors combined.
MBE President Stuart Mathis joined the company in January 2001 as executive vice president of operations. He became president in October 2002. Under his leadership, and with the dynamic strategic plan of UPS and MBE, the company expects to continue its outstanding growth record. As the MBE network continues to grow, so too will the companys commitment to providing personalized and convenient business solutions with world-class customer service. This sentiment is echoed in the MBE slogan, Theres help in here. Real help.
In 2003, Entrepreneur magazines annual “Franchise 500,” a ranking of franchise opportunities based on factors such as financial strength, stability, growth rate and size, rated MBE #1 in the postal and business services category for the 13th consecutive year.
MBE has introduced a number of technological initiatives designed to help MBE franchisees enhance customer service and product/service offerings, streamline accounting functions, improve communications and enable corporate account transactions. As part of an evolving technology platform, MBE is implementing a wide-area network linking domestic locations to the corporate office, replacing cash registers with POS systems, and utilizing a new state-of-the-art manifest system. By having the majority of its locations “wired,” MBE is poised to continue meeting the changing demands of small businesses and consumers.
MBE Center Profile
Typically, MBE locations are in shopping centers and commercial complexes, but can also be found in special venues such as airports, universities, convention centers, hotels and military bases. Location sizes range from 1,200 to 1,800 sq. ft. Locations feature brightly colored graphics and neon signage. MBE locations generally employ a full-time staff of two or more employees, including the owner/operator. Hours of operation vary, but locations are typically open Monday-Saturday, from 8 AM to 6 PM. Many locations have longer operating hours and are open on Sundays.
A New Image
MBE recently introduced a new center design and décor package to its global franchise system. The new interior design, dubbed image and brand into color scheme and high-impact graphics. The new color scheme replaces the previous red, white and blue palette with softer neutral colors: beige, charcoal and black.
The contemporary appearance is geared toward heightening awareness of MBE products and services through a redesigned menu board and point-of-purchase materials. The front counter, where initial contact with customers occurs, has been moved to a centralized location to promote a more customer-friendly environment.