Eric Elwell – An Innovator Bringing Increased Profits to Restaurants, Bars, and Night Clubs
Eric Elwell is revolutionizing the business landscape for restaurant, bar, and night club owners with his cutting edge “2 Touch POS” technology. Elwell, founder of Xenios LLC, has brought together a dynamic team to influence the way his industry handles day to day operations by offering a system that will save business owners time and money, track specific nuances of their business, and create reports that have the potential to catapult their business into greater profitability. Armed with proven data from actual results, he is able to graphically demonstrate the impact his progressive technology can have on the bottom line.
Elwell, a former real estate investor and mortgage broker, left the housing industry to establish himself as a business consultant in 2002. After calling on businesses for several months and gaining extensive training in business process improvement, he pieced together a commonality among the businesses he was encountering. There was a very limited amount of data being generated to formulate improvement strategies. Elwell states, “I noticed that a lot of these small business owners were using cash registers instead of computerized point-of-sale systems. So I became a Microsoft partner and I got set up to sell their retail management package and went on to pick up their accounting package.”
As a result of his discovery and training, Elwell founded Small Business Systems LLC in 2002 and expanded it in 2005 when he acquired the Microsoft Corporation business practice of Mengel, Metzger, Barr & Company LLP. With twelve employees, the firm focused primarily on automating point-of-sale processes for companies in the retail and hospitality sectors. As a result of the acquisition, Elwell’s Small Business Systems LLC strengthened its accounting expertise to provide end-to-end transaction services for their clients.
Within a few short years Elwell’s business model was being redefined as he found the market area where he felt he could have the most impact. He paraphrases the words of Chet Holmes, “If you want to be the best in the world at anything you have to figure out how to do one thing four-thousand times, not four-thousand things one time.” Based on this advice, in 2008 the company decided to divest its accounting and retail point of sale services so they could focus on their redefined purpose, point-of-sale (POS) for bars, restaurants and night clubs. The firm had been selling 2 Touch POS since early 2000 as a dealer, but decided in 2008 to concentrate solely on selling this system without the distraction of other business objectives vying for their attention. To accomplish their goals, Elwell said, “We made a couple of key hires internally to focus on systemization, and basically what we realized is that if we don’t get help from the people writing the software, it’s going to be hard to grow.” Meanwhile, the owner of 2 Touch POS determined his company had strayed from their origin as a custom software development firm. As a result, Elwell was given an opportunity to acquire the 2 Touch POS product line as well as the related accounts receivable and accounts payable. According to Elwell, “In September of 2009 we came to an agreement and in October we executed the transaction. We have had our hands very full since then. We were already reselling the product, but taking over all the developers and his staff, it was a big shift.” With the acquisition of 2 Touch POS, Xenios LLC was created and the company now operates under that name.
As an avid reader, Elwell has been influenced by numerous authors over the course of his professional career. Michael Gerber and the E-Myth Academy and Tony Robbins have been standouts in the formation of his strategic methodology in building his business. Both of these authors have breathed encouragement and intelligence into the ongoing formation of his business savvy. Elwell has taken conceptual writings and combined them with his own practical experiences to develop a winning atmosphere for himself, his team of experts, and the customers he serves.
The system Elwell and his team have developed goes beyond simple point of sale software. It focuses on sales management to enable the business owner to become more profitable. Elwell has also developed a strategic affiliation with developers and specialists in inventory strategies. This has opened the doors for an expanded clientele with which they can work to help clients increase their contribution margin, execute menu engineering tactics, and improve overall sales management. According to Elwell, “The owners that use us love us and swear by us. Our product was developed by customer feedback. That’s what has made it so good. This wasn’t developed in an ivory tower. Actual customers said, ‘This is what we need the product to do’ and the developers made it happen. It’s simple and easy and fast. Our customers just love it. Anyone that has used any other program and then has used ours will tell you it’s the best thing out there. This is custom developed software that we have been able to scale to the masses in a way that is extremely beneficial to the business owner.”
Elwell’s company has sponsored the Night Club and Bar Rescue Tour which was a series of educational seminars for industry owners held in Chicago, Philadelphia and Long Beach. Elwell has also held his own educational events in multiple cities throughout the country. He says, “We work with our inventory specialists in training events. They focus their presentation on inventory control and we teach business owners how to get more contribution margin per guest.” Elwell’s current educational presentations are entitled, Four Key Threats to Your Survival and Three Strategic Sales Practices to Supercharge Your Bar Revenue. Elwell’s goal is not just to sell product, he sincerely wants to add value to the business owner through education. He says, “Yes, we have products and services to support what we teach. But we want to add significant value to our customers and potential customers. Some owners have told us that the information they received from our seminars could mean an extra quarter of a million dollars a year to them.” One owner has said of the educational event they attended, “Thank you very much for this information. I don’t know what I don’t know so when I receive these little tidbits of information to help me run my business more efficiently, I get very excited. I’m very interested in the reports you were running, especially the menu performance reports. With this I can now spend some time learning more about my business."
Elwell’s 2 Touch POS system has numerous benefits for the independent operator. One example is a simple process they refer to as “Speed of Service.” This simple method can literally be implemented on the system in two minutes. One owner said by implementing this one component, it will increase his revenue by ninety-thousand dollars annually. Another simplistic, but powerful feature is the Menu Engineering Worksheet. The worksheet is a report based on sales that will give the owner information about how to structure their menu for maximum sales. This report, along with other educational information about the psychology of menu preparation Elwell is able to supply, has also been proven to increase sales. In fact, the information he teaches is based on a study by Cornell University in which certain menu placement tactics can increase the average ticket size by eight percent.
Elwell attributes his success to persistence. He says, “Failure is not an option. We either win or we die. Either we are growing or we are shrinking. I really enjoy getting better at things. That brings me extreme pleasure. Every day I review key metrics and compare where we are to where we want to be. We have also developed a very good sales system. It’s a combination of all of those things that have brought us the successes we have obtained.” Elwell and his team pride themselves on the educational events they hold and believe this has also been a significant factor in their success. Additionally, they have created over one-hundred YouTube instructional videos to function as ongoing support and training for their product. They are a well organized group and have developed a software system that may be the most user friendly system available on the market today.
Elwell’s 2 Touch POS system has caught the attention of television host Jon Taffer of Spike TV’s popular program, Bar Rescue. Xenios' 2 Touch POS system is featured on Spike TV’s popular program, “Bar Rescue,” in the upcoming season 2.. Elwell says, “This is a tremendous opportunity for us to support an outstanding television program that is watched by millions of people in our industry. It has been a pleasure to work with Jon Taffer and the staff of Bar Rescue. We strongly believe our product will make a significant difference in the ongoing operation of the bars featured in these upcoming episodes. That is our ultimate goal, to help owners in our industry become as successful as possible.”
Because of the solid foundation that has been established, Elwell anticipates their sales will double this year and expects a continual climb in revenue over the course of the next several years. He anticipates adding four more software developers, three internal sales staff, and three more installers. He will continue to tour the country as a speaker at educational events and will always be looking for ways to improve their software system for the benefit of their customer base. Because of his expertise and contributions to his profession, Elwell will be featured as one of America's Premier Experts and Trendsetters in Inc Magazine
. Additional information about Elwell, Xenios LLC, and the 2 Touch POS
technology is available at www.2touchpos.com
or by calling their office at 866.227.8682.