Asia Thomas has made history by becoming the first Black woman to own a Subway franchise in Duluth, Georgia. The single mother of three became a franchise owner after a woman she met working at Subway headquarters told her to apply.
“I met a young, Black woman who worked for Subway headquarters. She encouraged me to apply and so I just happened to submit an inquiry. It was almost like it was destined to be,” Thomas said, according to Black Business.
While working on becoming a franchise owner, Thomas found an existing Subway franchisee who wanted to sell his restaurant due to its low revenue.
Thomas used her savings to purchase it and was able to double the franchise’s profits within just one month of taking over. When Thomas took over the management of the franchise, several of the staff left because they doubted her capabilities. They did not believe she could make the store profitable again. Thomas believes that they doubted her because she was Black and young.
The young businesswoman is now more focused on growing her profits and buying more franchises. She would want others to do the same. “I’m definitely going to buy more,” she said. “I would feel like a quitter if I didn’t buy more.”
Thomas is a graduate of Clark Atlanta University and earned her MBA from Florida International University. Following her graduation, she began working in corporate America until the pandemic struck.
The pandemic disrupted supply chains across the world, rendering many companies unprofitable. In addition, governments worldwide instituted lockdown measures to contain the spread of the virus. Most workers stayed home without engaging in meaningful economic activities.
This affected output, resulting in many companies reducing their workforce or closing down their businesses. Thomas found herself in such a situation as she wasn’t able to go to work in person. She then started to look for other ways to earn more money to take care of her family. And that was when she met the woman at Subway who encouraged her to apply to become a franchise owner.