Berthillon Ice Cream Franchise Opportunity

by Alice

Berthillon is a name synonymous with exquisite French ice cream, a brand that has captivated the hearts and taste buds of millions since its inception. Founded in 1954 by Raymond Berthillon, this family-owned business has become an iconic institution in Paris, renowned for its commitment to quality, craftsmanship, and authentic flavors. Situated on the picturesque Île Saint-Louis in the heart of Paris, Berthillon has built its legacy on the principles of tradition and excellence.


The origin story of Berthillon is as charming as the brand itself. Raymond Berthillon began his journey with a small hotel, Hôtel Saint-Louis en l’Isle, which he ran with his wife. It was here that Raymond decided to start making ice cream to serve to his hotel guests. His creations, made with fresh and natural ingredients, quickly gained popularity, and soon, Berthillon ice cream became a beloved treat among Parisians and visitors alike.

What sets Berthillon apart is its unwavering dedication to using only the finest ingredients. The brand prides itself on using pure, natural products with no artificial additives, preservatives, or coloring agents. Fruits are sourced from local markets, and the dairy is of the highest quality, ensuring a rich and authentic taste in every scoop. This commitment to quality has earned Berthillon numerous accolades and a loyal following that spans generations.

Investment Requirements

Investing in a Berthillon ice cream franchise is not just an opportunity to own a piece of a legendary brand but also a commitment to maintaining the high standards and values that Berthillon stands for. Prospective franchisees should be prepared for a significant investment, reflecting the premium nature of the product and the brand’s esteemed reputation.

Initial Franchise Fee: The initial franchise fee for a Berthillon franchise typically ranges from €50,000 to €75,000. This fee grants the franchisee the rights to operate under the Berthillon brand and access to the company’s proprietary recipes and training programs.

Total Investment: The total investment required to open a Berthillon franchise can range from €250,000 to €500,000. This includes the cost of leasing or purchasing a prime retail location, which is crucial for attracting the high foot traffic necessary for success. Additionally, the investment covers the costs of store build-out, equipment, initial inventory, and working capital.

Royalty Fees: Franchisees are required to pay ongoing royalty fees, typically around 6-8% of gross sales. These fees support the brand’s marketing efforts, product development, and continuous training and support for franchisees.

Marketing Fees: In addition to royalty fees, franchisees contribute to a national marketing fund, usually about 2% of gross sales. This fund is used for broader marketing campaigns designed to enhance brand visibility and drive traffic to all franchise locations.

Profitability and Success Indicators

The profitability of a Berthillon franchise hinges on several key factors, including location, management, and adherence to brand standards. Here are some indicators and benchmarks to consider:

Location: Success in the ice cream business is heavily influenced by location. High foot traffic areas such as tourist attractions, shopping districts, and upscale neighborhoods are ideal for a Berthillon franchise. Proximity to complementary businesses like cafes, restaurants, and entertainment venues can also boost sales.

Quality and Consistency: Berthillon’s reputation is built on quality. Ensuring that every scoop of ice cream meets the brand’s high standards is crucial. Franchisees must rigorously adhere to the company’s recipes and preparation methods to maintain consistency and customer satisfaction.

Customer Experience: Exceptional customer service is a cornerstone of the Berthillon experience. Franchisees should focus on creating a warm and inviting atmosphere, training staff to be knowledgeable and friendly, and fostering a connection with the local community.

Marketing and Local Engagement: While the national marketing fund supports broader campaigns, local marketing efforts are essential. Franchisees should engage with their community through events, partnerships, and social media to build a loyal customer base.

Operational Efficiency: Efficient operations and cost management are critical to profitability. Franchisees must manage inventory, control waste, and optimize staffing to ensure smooth and cost-effective operations.

Franchisee Qualifications and Characteristics

Berthillon is looking for franchisees who share their passion for quality and excellence. Ideal candidates should possess the following qualifications and characteristics:

Business Acumen: Prospective franchisees should have a solid understanding of business operations, preferably with experience in retail or food service. Strong financial management skills are essential to ensure profitability and sustainability.

Passion for the Brand: A deep appreciation for Berthillon’s heritage and commitment to quality is crucial. Franchisees should be enthusiastic about representing the brand and maintaining its high standards.

Customer-Centric Approach: Successful franchisees are those who prioritize customer satisfaction. They should be friendly, approachable, and dedicated to creating a memorable experience for every customer.

Community Engagement: Being active and visible in the local community is important for building a loyal customer base. Franchisees should be willing to participate in local events and form partnerships with other businesses.

Commitment to Excellence: Attention to detail and a relentless pursuit of excellence are key traits for a Berthillon franchisee. This includes maintaining the quality of products, service, and overall customer experience.

Examples of Successful Franchisees

Several Berthillon franchisees have set exemplary standards, showcasing the potential for success within the brand. Here are a few notable examples:

Pierre and Marie Dubois, Paris: The Dubois couple opened their Berthillon franchise in a bustling district of Paris and quickly became a favorite among locals and tourists. Their dedication to quality and exceptional customer service has made their store one of the top-performing franchises in the network.

Lucille Martin, Lyon: Lucille brought the Berthillon experience to Lyon, focusing on local engagement and innovative marketing strategies. By hosting tasting events and collaborating with local businesses, she has built a strong community presence and a loyal customer base.

Jean-Claude Lefèvre, Nice: Jean-Claude’s franchise in Nice stands out for its picturesque location and commitment to sustainability. He sources local ingredients and uses eco-friendly practices, aligning with Berthillon’s values and appealing to environmentally-conscious consumers.

Contact Information and Next Steps

If you are passionate about bringing the Berthillon experience to your community and believe you have what it takes to be a successful franchisee, the next steps are straightforward:

Initial Inquiry: Contact Berthillon’s franchise development team to express your interest. You can reach them via the official Berthillon website or by emailing [email protected]. Provide some basic information about yourself and your business background.

Application Process: If your initial inquiry is well-received, you will be invited to complete a formal application. This includes providing detailed financial information and outlining your proposed location and business plan.

Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD): Upon acceptance of your application, you will receive the Franchise Disclosure Document. This document contains essential information about the franchise agreement, investment requirements, and the obligations of both parties.

Due Diligence: Take the time to thoroughly review the FDD, seek advice from legal and financial advisors, and speak with existing franchisees to gain a comprehensive understanding of the business.

Discovery Day: If you proceed, you will be invited to a Discovery Day at the Berthillon headquarters in Paris. This is an opportunity to meet the executive team, tour the facilities, and learn more about the company’s operations.

Franchise Agreement: If both parties are satisfied, you will sign the franchise agreement. This formalizes your partnership and sets the stage for the opening of your Berthillon franchise.

Training and Support: You will undergo an extensive training program covering all aspects of the business, from product preparation to customer service and marketing. Ongoing support is provided to ensure your success.

Grand Opening: With the support of the Berthillon team, you will prepare for your grand opening. This includes finalizing the store build-out, training staff, and launching local marketing campaigns.


Becoming a Berthillon franchisee is an opportunity to join a storied brand with a rich history and a commitment to excellence. With significant investment requirements come the potential for profitability and success, driven by a passion for quality, a customer-centric approach, and a strong community presence. If you have the qualifications and the drive to uphold the Berthillon legacy, this franchise opportunity could be your gateway to a rewarding and delicious business venture.


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