George Hamilton (center front) is flanked by his Snap-on Tools franchise team in St. Charles, IL.
As an aircraft mechanic in the Air Force for 23 years it was imperative that MSgt. George Hamilton, Ret. be totally precise every minute of every day on the job. Pilots put their trust in him to ensure the planes they flew were safe and reliable in all flying conditions. Their lives depended on Hamilton’s meticulous attention to detail and devotion to precision maintenance work.
Now, as the owner of authorized Snap-on franchise businesses in the town of St. Charles, Illinois, Hamilton has carried over that military mindset of precision work and expertise. Only now he’s providing loyal customers in the automotive, aviation, marine and railroad industries with the best built tools and equipment sold on the market to do their jobs with precision accuracy.
“The skills I learned in the military helped me be more precise in what I did, especially when I was an aircraft mechanic. You had to be totally precise. So, when I do a job now, I try to do it completely and correctly and make sure it’s right for the customer and for my business,” said Hamilton, a Snap-on franchise business owner since 2012.
A Global Network of Franchises
Hamilton is part of a global network of Snap-on Tools franchises that now numbers about 4,570. The 100-year-old company headquartered in Kenosha, Wisconsin offers more than 56,000 products, and operates in more than 130 countries. Snap-on Tools franchise business owners sell exclusive, premium products that ranked number one in every category – Hand tools, Power Tools, Tool Storage and Diagnostic Equipment – in a recent independent survey by Frost & Sullivan of U.S. automotive technicians.
A Franchise Business Review Hall of Famer, Snap-on Tools has become a mainstay on FBR’s annual awards list and was recognized in 2021 as both a Top Recession-Proof Franchise and Top Veteran-Owned Franchise based on how its franchise owners rated the company on support and overall satisfaction.
“At Snap-on, we value the hard work and sacrifice of our veteran franchise owners,” said Tom Kasbohm, Director of Franchising at Snap-on Tools, a proud member and sponsor of VetFran. An International Franchise Association affiliate, VetFran supports veterans interested in franchise ownership and careers in franchising.
“We are honored to have hundreds of veteran franchise owners like George who bring their commitment, skills and service to our Snap-on Tools franchise system,” Kasbohm said.
It makes perfect sense for Snap-on Tools to be fully invested in our military veterans. The 100-year-old company, which has been franchising since 1991, places a lot of pride in being an American manufacturer, and is firmly grounded in its core belief in patriotic duty. Both the military and Snap-on are also mission-driven organizations.
American-made Products from a Great Franchise Brand
Snap-on’s long storied history of helping keep America industry running through difficult times certainly resonated with George Hamilton, who served in many Operations among them: Desert Shield, Desert Storm Iraqi and Enduring Freedom, the Second Gulf War, and Iraq before officially retiring from the military in 2012. He spent the last two years of his time in the Air Force carefully weighing his career options. A combat-tested aircraft mechanic, he considered employment with the airlines, but because his wife was an international flight attendant, he didn’t want both of their paychecks to be dependent on one industry.
Besides, he said during a TV interview, “I wanted to work for myself. I thought I’d make a pretty good boss.”
After reading a story in Air Force Times about franchises giving veterans incentives, Hamilton discovered Snap-on and promptly found a local Snap-on franchise owner and requested to ride along with him. He asked a lot of questions that day, and his due diligence paid off in an opportunity to buy a franchise near his hometown of Chicago, just as his retirement from the military kicked in.
“One of the big reasons I wanted to go with Snap-on Tools was that they were still an American-made company. That was important to me along with the fact that they make really good tools,” Hamilton said.
“What led me to expand my business was the skills I learned in the military and how to supervise, mentor, train young airmen,” said Hamilton, who’s hired two other veterans since becoming a multi-unit franchise owner in 2018.
“There’s a common bond in anybody that’s served,” he said. “And they see where I’m coming from as a manager and how I want things done.”
When asked what advice he would give other veterans considering a career in franchising, Hamilton said, “Go in knowing it’s a lot of hard work, but worth every bit of it. It’s your own business. Your sense of mission of being a veteran will help you in that sense.”
“I feel very comfortable saying that this was the best decision I could have made when I retired from the military,” Hamilton said.
Become a Snap-on Tools Franchisee
Depending on how you pay for various parts of the business, including whether you buy or lease your mobile store, your start-up out-of-pocket expense can vary.
Out-of-pocket start-up expenses for a franchise when using Snap-on financing range from $37,583 to $55,545, which Includes $11,972–$18,590 working capital. The estimated total investment range for a Snap-on franchise is from $169,223 to $382,235.
Starting a small business isn’t easy, but Snap-on can help. Snap-on is one of the few franchising companies that offers in-house financing. You may qualify to finance your business through Snap-on Credit, which has financing programs that could meet your initial needs. Snap-on Tools will provide an FDD that includes more detail on the estimated initial investment and other fees.
For more details and franchise opportunities with Snap-on, be sure to visit: snaponfranchise.com