Premier Pools & Spas – Franklin, Tennessee

April 29, 2024

Premier Pools & Spas

From Humble Beginnings to Industry Dominance


Rapid company growth and franchise investment tell a story of unmatched expansion in the pool construction industry

Swimming beyond the competition with a dynamic approach, Premier Pools & Spas has developed the leading services that its client-base has come to expect. Utilizing marketing and analytics to expand and grow through a strong, organic referral base, Premier Pools & Spas is looking forward to further success.

Originally founded in 1988 by Paul Porter and Keith Harbeck, Premier Pools & Spas began as a modest venture in Sacramento, California that blossomed into a multi-million [“dollar”?] empire and the largest single swimming pool company in the United States.

By adopting a successful franchise model, Premier Pools & Spas has expanded its reach from a single state to serving the entire country.  It now operates in tandem with its partner franchises, Premier Pool Service, Pinnacle Pools & Spas, and Pinnacle Pool Service, all under the larger company, Premier Franchise Management (PFM).

While its operations carry a spirit of unwavering commitment to customer interactions and satisfaction, the franchise still does not go without the state-of-the-art digital marketing strategies used by others in the industry.

Premier Pools & Spas has also built a foundation of integrity, reliability, and personalized attention to each customer’s needs within its company culture. Franchise owners often go the extra mile for their customers to routinely exceed the expectations of their customers.

So, as a byproduct, the nurturing of long-lasting relationships that extend beyond the initial transaction has become firmly ingrained within the general culture of the franchise at large.

By empowering franchisees with the tools, resources, and support they need to thrive, the brand continues to expand its reach and impact, delivering unparalleled service to customers nationwide.


Triumph Over Industry Turbulence

When Premier Pools & Spas was first established 35 years ago, its initial performance was anything but minor. Even before it was a franchise, the company stood proudly at over $100 million in annual revenue.

However, when The Great Recession of 2007 to 2011 came, it led to a staggering 70% loss in the industry customer base.

With the industry being so fragmented after the recession, Porter identified a need for consolidation within the industry and an opportunity to scale within his company.

This is what birthed the idea to pivot to the franchising model, and to this day, that decision has become a powerful testament to the company’s durability under rough conditions.

Since then, the company’s last 10 years operating as a franchise can only be described as a massive boom. Within that time frame, the average growth rate in the industry was about 48%, however, Premier Pools & Spas grew by a massive 2400%.

The PFM network witnessed exponential growth, reaching a staggering $757 million in revenue by 2022, and now supports 165+ locations between both its pool building and pool servicing franchises.

“There are 15,000 pool builders and… last year we built about 11% of all the pools in America, so our franchises are highly successful. We have a kind of unique model,” says PFM Founder and CEO Paul Porter, recognizing his franchise’s preference for handling many of its operational processes in-house.

Elevating Franchisee Standards Through Digital Innovation

Many of Premier Pools & Spas’ in-house operations make active use of newer technology to accomplish the task at hand.

Recognizing the power of digital marketing, Premier Pools & Spas invested heavily in cutting-edge strategies to reach customers effectively.

“The big difference that we have is we went out and became experts at digital marketing really early on,” Porter says, explaining that from SEO optimization to augmented reality brochures, the franchise consistently leverages technology to engage and captivate audiences, driving unparalleled growth.

The best example of this can be found in its incredible website performance, which, just last year, drew in approximately 1.5 million people, resulting in 115,000 new leads in 2023.

The franchise’s main operating system was also designed in-house, giving it total oversight over the day-to-day operations of its franchisees, which is crucial. While pool builders are great at building pools, many of them lack marketing and operational skills.

So, by internalizing and centralizing efforts around such powerful digital assets, Premier Pools & Spas can easily and consistently support and communicate with its franchisees.

“We do a lot of things for them,” Porter states, “We have in-house graphic artists, we build our own brochures and websites, we build our own apps, we run our own YouTube channels, and we do our own remarketing.”

Fortunately, these actions all feed into the strong commitment to franchisee success, which the company takes very seriously.

Through comprehensive training programs, ongoing support, and a family-oriented culture, Premier Pools & Spas empower individuals to thrive in their entrepreneurial journey, and that process starts from day one.

“Onboarding starts even before the franchise agreement. Ultimately, we’re looking for character first… we’re looking for people who have integrity, business acumen, and the ability to learn,” Porter says, emphasizing the importance of coachability within the franchise, as some of the company’s franchisees get brought on with no prior experience building pools.

In terms of training support, PFM franchise owners are sent to train at either the company’s Sacramento or Dallas, depending on if they own a build or service franchise.

Additionally, franchise owners are supported with monthly sales webinars and quarterly P & L reviews and provided with detailed road maps of the exact numbers they need to hit to expand to whatever intended annual revenue goals they want to aim for.

Other than passing the initial character assessment and background check, becoming a Premier Pools & Spa franchisee, involves an initial investment ranging from $100,00 – $150,000, with $45,000 making up the franchise fee that veterans can get a 10% discount on.

While it doesn’t include physical storefronts in its base franchise model, 90% of its franchisees usually progress to the point of needing one, at which point they are provided with the support they need.


Recognizing Partnerships and Progress

The hidden factors of Premier Pools & Spas’ success involve a largely human element. It maintains close relationships with its vendors to the point that Porter referred to them as being more like “partners.”

“We’ve been dealing with a company called Fluidra… I’ve been doing business with them for over 30 years. And there years ago we partnered up with Latham to start doing [something] that we’ve never done before: fiberglass pools,” Porter says.

In the time that the franchise has been partnered with Latham, it has also become the largest installer of fiberglass pools in the United States. So, while PFM and its franchises work with different vendors across the country, Fluidra and Latham have remained two of the most integral partnerships to its process.

Premier Pools & Spas’ commitment to excellence has certainly not gone unnoticed. “We’ve been awarded over 30 awards in the franchising world specifically,” says Director of Franchise Development Bart Zacks.

Premier Pools & Spas has been recognized by several reputable institutions for its stellar performance. Namely, it has ranked number 1 in its category by both Franchise Business Review for the last three years and has also been ranked number 1 in its category by Entrepreneur magazine.

Additionally, despite 2024 having only just started, Premier Pools & Spas has already received 5 awards or recognitions for its performance. As more time passes, more recognition is sure to come and Premier Pools & Spas is sure to rise to the occasion to set the standard for industry leadership and innovation.

As Premier Pools & Spas looks to the future, the focus remains on expansion and service excellence.

“It’s truly all on our ability to continue to enhance our onboarding services… I would say in the next five years we can probably get to between 350 to 400 franchises,” Porter says, explaining that his franchise is actively identifying the areas of its market that are being under-served.

When identified all that’s left is to capitalize on the opportunity and become the sole solution, which is what Premier Pools & Spas has managed to do quite literally since its inception.

“As you know, growth begets growth… nobody’s even attempting to do what we’re trying to do, we just think there are growth opportunities going forward, and more people will recognize what we’re doing and want to be part of the team,” Porter says.

With ambitious all-time goals to establish 1000 service franchises and 500 build franchises, the Premier Pools & Spas sit ready to transform backyards and redefine outdoor living spaces across the nation.

In summary, this franchise’s journey is a testament to the power of vision, perseverance, and a commitment to excellence.

As the company continues to innovate and expand, it remains dedicated to creating unforgettable experiences for customers and franchisees alike, shaping the landscape of the swimming pool industry for years to come.


Premier Pools & Spas

Where:  Headquartered in Franklin, Tennessee – Operating Nationally

What: The largest pool construction company in the United States operating on a successful franchise model it uses to serve the entire country.



Fluidra –

Fluidra is a publicly listed company focused on developing innovative products, services and IoT solutions for the residential and commercial pool markets, globally. The company operates in over 45 countries and owns a portfolio of some of the industry’s most recognized and trusted brands, including Jandy*, Polaris*, S.R.Smith*, and Cover-Pools*. To learn more about Fluidra, visit or call 800-822-7933.

Latham –

Latham is the largest designer, manufacturer, and marketer of inground residential swimming pools in North America, Australia, and New Zealand. With over 65 years of experience, Latham offers pools that fit every budget and style preference. Latham’s family of products bring together the best in fiberglass, vinyl liners, automatic safety covers, solid and mesh safety covers and various pool accessories.

Latham’s mission is to provide top quality products, competitive lead times, and customer-centric service makes Latham ‘easy to do business with’ and the preferred manufacturer in the swimming pool industry.

Latham is one of the only pool manufacturers to receive ICC-ES Certification of its products. This ensures that building products meet code requirements. ICC-ES certified products are building inspectors’ #1 choice for approving building codes.

With a coast-to-coast operations platform consisting of approximately 1,800 employees across over 24 locations, Latham is the established provider of choice with a proven history of quality and customer satisfaction. When it comes to quality, selection, simplicity, and support, Latham is The Pool Company.

Guardian Pool Fence –

For over 30 years, Guardian Pool Fence Systems has been dedicated to pool safety and drowning prevention. Our industry leader fence systems like the Premier Pool Fence, and our innovative No Holes pool fence sets the standard for safety features. As a family-run business based in California, we remain committed to advancing pool safety worldwide.

Heritage Pool Supply Group –

Heritage Pool Supply Group’s vision is to grow by forming a network of the best independent distributors to provide exceptional customer service while increasing our value as a trusted growth partner to top manufacturers in the industry. Our mission is to help our family of companies achieve new heights and provide opportunities for all employees to grow, thrive, and advance with the company for decades to come.

Aquabella Tile –

Emser Tile –

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