James J. Liautaud founded Jimmy John's in Charleston, Illinois, in 1983 when he was 19 years old. With used equipment, a refrigerator, one meat slicer, a freezer and an oven, Jimmy John Liautaud started his business without even a posted menu or an outdoor sign. At the time, he offered four sandwich varieties and 25-cent soft drinks. After passing out sandwich samples throughout the college town, Liautuad added delivery service, tables, outdoor signs, menu boards and an expanded menu. He opened several more stores and developed a prototype before franchising began in 1993. Jimmy John's franchisees bake bread at each store every day, and every sandwich is made fresh to order in 30 seconds.
Initial Investment $325,500 - $555,000
Net-worth Requirement $300,000
Liquid Cash Requirement $80,000