Why I Bought: How This World-Traveling Finance Professional Is Bringing Heyday To Denver

October 3, 2022

After spending most of his life trekking across four continents, Brad Kott has left a life in finance behind and put his travels on pause to open a Heyday location in Colorado, starting with Denver in 2022.

Entrepreneur Brad Kott is bringing emerging skincare brand Heyday to the Mile High City. In a first for Denver, the facial-focused concept will provide Metro Denver residents with the option to make elevated skincare an accessible part of their routine. 

“Brad is the ideal Heyday owner; he is poised for success as he brings our first Heyday locations to the Metro Denver area,” said Dennis Campbell, vice president of franchise development. “Looking ahead, Brad has tremendous potential for growth to bring more locations to Denver and the surrounding area in the coming years. We are confident that the concept will really resonate in Denver, a city that is only continuing to become popular, especially among younger generations.” 

Born in Washington, D.C., Kott’s father was a member of the U.S. Foreign Service and brought the family with him as he lived everywhere from Africa to Canada before eventually moving back to the United States. After graduating from college and spending some years working on Wall Street, Kott and his then-girlfriend (now wife) were bitten by the travel bug once again, spending a year exploring Australia, New Zealand, and South America. 

Ultimately settling down in the states, Kott decided to head back to the world of finance, eventually moving to Denver with investment banking advisory firm Evercore ISI. 

“At that point, I started to think about what was next for me, and I wanted to do something that was a bit more entrepreneurial,” Kott said. “I stayed on with ISI and, in my free time, I spent nearly two years learning about franchising, making contacts and toying with the idea of opening a quick service food franchise of my own. In the end, it wasn’t right for me, and I decided to back out. But, that being said, I would have done that experience all over again because it was such a great learning opportunity about the industry.”

Once deciding to enter the world of franchising full-time, Kott resigned from Evercore ISI in March 2021 and was on the phone discussing Heyday ownership within two weeks. 

“A friend had seen the news that Heyday had done a Series B round of funding with Level 5 Capital Partners, and they knew I was looking at different opportunities within the franchise space,” Kott said. “Not only did Level 5 invest a substantial amount of money in Heyday, but they also committed to opening 40 of their own stores — now increased to 60 — and that was really a validation of the investment.”

Kott said he spent time with Level 5 to understand their plans, ultimately traveling to New York for the brand’s discovery day, known as Field Day, at the Heyday flagship store. 

“We had an incredible two days with the management team, and that continued to validate the kind of people at Heyday and what they were trying to do in the marketplace in terms of the offering they had for the consumer. For me, that was a lot of it — just the people and the culture and how they interface with their customers. Heyday kept checking all the boxes along the way.”

Heyday provides expert, personalized and affordable skincare that empowers clients to be their best self. Members book monthly visits with a trained esthetician as part of their regular health and wellness routine, and by focusing solely on facials, Heyday offers an effective membership model that helps to promote recurring business. Rising above gender norms, Heyday makes facials accessible to anyone and everyone.

Why Denver Is the Right Choice for Heyday

Kott signed on for 13 Heyday locations in Colorado and he has plans to open his first two Denver-area locations in 2022. The remaining 11 locations will open steadily — from Boulder to Highlands Ranch — over the next six to seven years. 

“We’re at the point of looking for real estate, but we’re planning to open the first two locations somewhere near Cherry Creek,” Kott said. “That’s our top-ranked demographic area right now. We’ll get there, but right now it’s all about building brand awareness within Denver, and then Colorado as a whole.”

And the Metro Denver area is ideal for the Heyday brand. Its current population of more than 3 million people has been growing at a faster rate than the national population since the 1930s. By 2030, the Metro Denver population is expected to reach more than 3.6 million, a population heavily concentrated by 30- to 44-year-olds, which represent a strong demographic for Heyday. 

How Heyday’s Corporate Supports Helped Seal the Deal for Kott

Heyday prioritizes finding the right owners and staff to ensure each location is set up for success. They’ve built a large, diverse team of expert licensed estheticians, who undergo a 10-day initial training followed by monthly continuing education programs. And with a sole focus on providing personalized facials to clients, Heyday allows its estheticians to shine as the star of the show.

“Sean Bock says he wants someone who is setting out to be a successful, long-term franchisee from the very beginning, and that has really resonated with me,” Kott said. “They're clearly investing for years five through 10 and not just years one through five. As a franchisee, that’s powerful, and I feel like I have all the tools and resources at my disposal to make it happen.”

Heyday’s estheticians are paid an hourly rate plus commission, which is above and beyond the industry standard of service-based commission pay only. Together, these elements combine to provide the ideal culture and environment for an esthetician to thrive, resulting in a turnover rate of less than 15% — well below the industry average of 35% to 50%. This care for its staff is shown in the level of support provided to Heyday owners from day one. 

“When I first signed with Heyday, we started working through a 400-point checklist that we are continuing to tackle as I get closer to opening my first store. Heyday is really process-oriented, and they care about getting this right,” Kott said. 

As Heyday continues to expand, launching locations coast to coast, the market opportunities are endless and new owners can take their pick. Currently, the brand has 11 existing locations open in New York City, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Bethesda, Maryland, with franchise agreements already signed to develop 100 additional locations in Chicago, Detroit, Phoenix, Austin, Cleveland, and others.

Heyday is targeting expansion in 54 major metropolitan areas, including San Francisco, Seattle, Phoenix, Denver, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Miami, and Boston, among other major cities. Backed by a knowledgeable and experienced corporate team, the brand plans to grow to include more than 300 locations by 2026.

Heyday’s startup costs range between $574,000 to $755,500, depending on which market the store is located. Other factors like design, configuration and labor costs will also impact the total investment. Click here to see the full cost breakdown.

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