From Baby Toys to Soccer Training: How One Entrepreneur has Leveraged PayPal to Help Grow Both of Her Budding Businesses

Kelley Legler is a serial entrepreneur who first found success in business when her son Jack was born. As a young mom sensing a need in the market, she developed Baby Jack & Co., a line of safe sensory toys. Her business grew from a stand at a community market to a full-scale operation with manufacturers and world-wide shipping.

As her children grew, so did Kelley’s interests and love for entrepreneurship. 

Building on her success, Kelley ventured into a new arena in 2023 with the launch of Field 99, an in-person soccer training facility that she co-owns with Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) professional soccer player Andre Hayne. Kelley and Andre launched the first Field 99 location near her hometown of Franklin, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee, last June. Less than one year later, the business now boasts a second location in Brookfield, Wisconsin.

Kelly Legler and Andre Hayne
Kelley Legler and Andre Hayne

Much like her first business, Kelley developed the business after she saw a need in her community. Many families in the area were traveling more than 90 minutes to take their children to advanced soccer training programs. She quickly realized there was great local talent and therefore a market for an elite soccer training facility to serve the families in the Milwaukee area. Since starting Field 99, Kelley has been working with professional soccer players who are also local coaches in the area -- creating a truly community-based elite soccer training program.

While Kelley has long been a small business owner, the two businesses she founded are vastly different and each present their own unique challenges when it comes to running the business. While Baby Jack & Co. is a product-based, predominantly online business that Kelley runs on her own, Field 99 is an in-person, service-oriented business that she runs with a partner.

Kids at Field 99

“With Baby Jack & Co., a lot of my work was focused on creating products and then forming relationships and engaging with my customers online,” Kelley shared. “With Field 99, the customer engagement model is different in that we need to form relationships with our customers and drive interest digitally, but then we engage with the families and children we work with in person. So, our business needs are very different – from how we engage with our customers to how we manage our payments.”

Products like PayPal Checkout, the PayPal Zettle Terminal, Tap to Pay with PayPal Zettle, and QR Codes (QRC) have enabled Kelley to seamlessly and securely accept payments for her business. “Tap to Pay with PayPal Zettle has been a game-changer for us. During practice, we don’t typically have a lot of staff on site and our coaches are always busy training the kids. With solutions like Tap to Pay and QRC through PayPal, the kids and parents can easily purchase things like drinks and snacks,” Kelley shared.

Kids at Field 99

The business’s biggest revenue-driver is when they host outdoor community events. “We use the Zettle Terminal at our large events for gate entry and also in our merchandise shop. But oftentimes the lines quickly get long, so we’ve been using Tap to Pay through PayPal Zettle for line busting, and it’s really helped us speed up the line and improve the customer experience,” Kelley shared. In addition, with Tap to Pay, Kelley is now able to give the Zettle Terminal to one of her volunteers to handle taking payments within the shop, while she uses her phone or tablet to interact with customers on site and get them to sign up for more services that they’re interested in. “I can send an invoice in real-time or get paid quickly with Tap to Pay through PayPal Zettle. It’s easy for me, and my customers are always surprised by how fast and easy it is.”

The ease and speed of the payment has helped grow the business. “Fifty percent of our online sales since we launched our website in June 2023 have come from completed checkouts with PayPal. It's exciting to see the trust our clients have in the checkout process and with the added updates PayPal has rolled out for the checkout process we anticipate that percentage to continue to increase.”

Zettle Card Reader at Field 99

In addition, Field 99 recently expanded to reach a larger national audience when they launched their digital download guides. By leveraging the knowledge and expertise of each of their business partners and coaches, Field 99 now offers online educational content on topics like nutrition, soccer training at home, coaching, and marketing athletes for college recruitment.

Drawing from her experience as a two-time successful business owner, Kelley offers valuable advice to aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their own businesses. “Always do your research and find out what is available to you. But be open-minded and ready to shift if needed. If something isn’t working out, pivot and find something better.”

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