Yotopia opening second shop in Augusta

Yotopia, a locally owned frozen yogurt business, is opening a second store in the Augusta area in two weeks.

The new location will open at 254 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway, next to Verizon Wire­less. Matt Steele and Daniel Brown also own the Yotopia at 4324 Washington Road in Evans, which opened in January.

They selected the second spot after a traffic study. About 20,000 vehicles pass by on Robert C. Daniel Jr. Park­way each day, Steele said.

“It was also just a good business opportunity because of the space,” he said. “Nobody would touch it, and we knew how to do it. It sat vacant for about a year.”

The 2,200-square-foot space was a Christian bookstore that was split into two store fronts. The larger part is occupied by Mattress Firm.

“When we got it, there were no bathrooms, no front door, no air conditioner,” Steele said. “We just got a shell, so we’ve had to convert everything.”

Steele, a carpenter, has been doing renovations with the help of his construction crew. Brown works full time in the auto paint and body industry.

The self-serve shop will offer 16 varieties of yogurt and about 100 toppings, Steele said.

“We actually own the name now. There are other existing Yotopias, but as of about two months ago, we now own the rights to the name nationally,” Steele said. “It’s not a franchise, but we have the rights to turn it into a franchise.”

Both locations will have eight employees.

Steele and Brown, who grew up in Richmond County, plan to open a third Yotopia.

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