Spain is a Mediterranean country, with a good climate, especially in the southern area, and tourists arriving from all over the world during most of the year.
Spain has a great culinary culture, from North to South: Bilbao, Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, the Costa Brava and the islands, there are so many spots where opening an Italian gelato shop could be a successful idea, also considering that the last estimates say that there are about 2.500 gelato shops in Spain, compared to the 37.000 in Italy (this include bar-gelato shops and pastry-gelato shops).
Let’s see what are the steps and key information you need to know before starting your gelato business in Spain.
- Define the details of your idea and consider all the business options: do you want to open a gelato shop or a coffee-gelato, frozen yogurt-gelato, pastry-gelato shop? Offering gelato together with other products can help spread your sales during the entire year.
- Choose the location: high traffic areas are always better as the consumption of gelato is mainly an impulse buy, but consider that the cost of the location might be higher. Touristic areas are also good, more if tourism is strong during the entire year shopping centers are usually a better option in smaller towns. Also check if there are other shops in the area and if there is demand for this kind of product. More shops and a healthy competition are not always bad for this business.
- Get all the information and understand what requirements are needed. You can do this at the Municipality. There might be specific requests related to the dimension of the shop or the doors, the emergency exits or the restroom. You will need to obtain all business licenses and permits required by the local government. You will need to have your shop inspected before receiving approval from the state health inspector. You will also need to register your business.
- Make a budget and understand what is the level of the initial investment and the monthly expenses for managing your gelato business. You can ask advise to Italian ingredients companies that often offer free support to understand the costs, select the machines and equipment needed.
- Learn to make a high quality Italian gelato: there are several courses you can take, in Italy but also in Spain. Visit one of the trade show in Europe (the most important is SIGEP, held in Rimini, Italy, every January)
- Think about a brand positioning and corporate identity, ask a designer to support you and a copywriter to help you with in-store communications and information.
- Although 70% of sales is related to 4 / 5 flavours, once the gelato shop is open, never stop learning: new ingredients, new tastes, new mixes. Check what the best Italian gelato makers are creating and test new flavours and ideas. Creativity is fundamental.
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