Joe Barbat’s Wireless Toyz History
Joe Barbat founded Wireless Toyz in 1996 as a single pager kiosk inside his father’s video store in Farmington Hills, Michigan. By identifying and filling a crucial consumer need, Joe Barbat brought in sufficient revenues to open his own store in only a year.
Under Joe Barbat’s direction, Wireless Toyz began franchising in 2001, following the success of the company’s first store. By the end of 2004, Joe Barbat had established 62 Wireless Toyzs. In 2006, Wireless Toyz had 180 locations across the country, and the number of franchises continues to grow. Joe Barbat attributes Wireless Toyz’s success to its innovative business model, which allows customers to compare several service plans and products side-by-side.
The Wireless Toyz business model has also been of great benefit to the Wireless Toyz franchisees, and Joe Barbat takes pride in providing others with a means to launch their own careers. Business owners who switch from a single service provider model to become Wireless Toyz franchisees often see their sales increase with the transition, according to reports published in 2005. Joe Barbat has also cited Wireless Toyz’s 98% franchisee satisfaction rate as crucial to the company’s success and compared its growth to viral marketing, stating, “People discover a good thing, and they pass it on.”
Joe Barbat sold WirelessToyz to a private equity firm in December 2007. In 2008 and 2009, the company was negatively impacted for a number of reasons. Recently, Joe Barbat re-acquired Wireless Toyz to help re-align the company and spearhead its growth into a nationally recognized name again.