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December 2016 £4.50

Turtle Tots

The baby-swimming franchise is making waves with its personal touch

Pride of place

The art of finding the right location for your franchise

Dum Dum Donutterie

Duke of doughnuts Paul Hurley has his sights set on global growth

home run

Dabbling in the property market led Sussanne Chambers to found homebased estate and lettings franchise HomeXperts. Given it’s now on target to have 50 franchisees by the end of the year, it’s safe to say she’s hit it out of the park

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sausage sausage sausage anne egg anneegg egg anne McMuffin McMuffin McMuffin I am a franchisee & this is my McDonald’s I am a franchisee & ‘For me, it’s all about the people. I have some this is my McDonald’s

fabulous people working for me – quite a few who’ve methe since day one – and it’s ‘For me,been it’s allwith about people. I have some a pleasure toworking watch them grow. Someone fabulous people for me – quite a few who started out as ame Crew Member who’ve been with since day oneis–now andthe it’s Business Manager at one of my restaurants.’ a pleasure to watch them grow. Someone Anne, operates four restaurants in Leeds who started out as a Crew Member is now the Business Manager at one of my restaurants.’ Anne, operates four five restaurants restaurantsin inLeeds Leeds

Register online at Come and talk to us at one of our Insight Days: Warwick, 6th January Bristol, 3rd February London, 10th March

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REGULARS 9 Editor’s letter 10 Contributors 13 News & events 81 Franchise diaries COLUMNS 15 Pip Wilkins 17 Claire Robinson 27 Nigel Toplis 29 Tony Bowman FEATURES


60 Mum’s the word

How franchises can tap into a talent pool of motivated mothers

64 No place like home Franchises have everything to win by adopting new smarthome technology

70 The legalities of bank lending Avoid the pitfalls of using banks to fund your business

30 Testing the waters How the family-friendly franchise Turtle Tots is making a splash

34 Location, location, location

The importance of finding the right spot for your franchise

40 Doughnuts with a difference

Dum Dum Donutterie is making global gains

49 The problem with late payments

How you can deal with clients not coughing up on time

54 Planning for SEO

Search engine optimisation is about stakeholders, not just algorithms 6


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Given her experience as a startup expert, Sussanne Chambers’ latest venture HomeXperts was always destined to be a success December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Healthy food. Healthy returns.

Fresh, nutritious, delicious and cooked to order in minutes. Wok&Go is a brand-led, fusion food chain, blending the best in Thai, Malaysian, Indonesian, Chinese and Japanese cuisine. With more than 20 stores currently open in the UK and Middle East, and with plans for further stores here and internationally, we’re going from strength to strength. We offer flexible franchise options and help new franchises every step of the way, from locating and designing your store to support with recruitment and marketing. To find out about opening your own Wok&Go noodle bar contact: 01244 376310 Wok&Go FP.indd 1


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VOLUME 04 ISSUE 12 / 2016

EDITORIAL Josh Russell – Editor Maria Barr – Web Editor Eric Johansson - Feature Writer DESIGN/PRODUCTION Leona Connor – Head Designer Jenny Allen – Junior Designer Dan Lecount – Web Development Manager SALES Gemma Campion – Sales Manager MARKETING David Thomas – Group Marketing Manager CIRCULATION Paul Kirby – Circulation & Data Manager ACCOUNTS Sally Stoker – Finance Manager ADMINISTRATION Laura Hyde – Administrator DIRECTOR Scott English – Managing Director Circulation enquiries: CE Media Call: 0124 567 3700 Elite Franchise is published by CE Media, 1st Floor, Regency House, 16 Victoria Road, Chelmsford, CM1 1NZ Copyright 2016. All rights reserved No part of Elite Franchise may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written consent of the editor. Elite Franchise will make every effort to return picture material, but this is at the owner’s risk. Due to the nature of the printing process, images can be subject to a variation of up to 15%, therefore CE Media Limited cannot be held responsible for such variation.

Looking back


ithout a doubt, 2016 has been a tumultuous year. After some gin-lubricated tears, Britain and the EU set their relationship status to ‘it’s complicated’ in June, while Donald Trump bulldozed his way to the US presidency in November, leaving a string of scandals in his wake. Fortunately, within the franchise sector there’s been a great deal more to smile about. Whether it’s ActionCOACH’s Ian Christelow offering up inoculations against

businesses going bust, Joe Texeira of Harry Ramsden’s introducing quintessentially British fish and chips to foreign palates or Sussanne Chambers using her startup spirit to found estate and lettings franchise HomeXperts, there have been some fantastic stories coming out of the industry over the last 12 months. So let me thank you all for a great year. Merry Christmas from all of us here at Elite Franchise and here’s to another cracking year of franchising in 2017.


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Mark Scott

Having joined NatWest back in 1982, Scott has clocked up years of experience in banking and advising British franchises about their finance needs. And as director of franchise development at NatWest, Scott’s a regular speaker at industry events. This month, he lends his expertise and reveals how to deal with one of the biggest headaches of running a business: late payments.


The co-founder of Extra Help, Robinson has been busy getting to know two of her newest franchisees: a husband and wife duo from East Cheshire. And after getting back from her franchise’s annual conference full of enthusiasm, she penned her December column for Elite Franchise on why it’s so important to find opportunities for franchisees to meet in person from time to time. 10

Pip Wilkins

The bfa chief executive has been inspired by the stories told at this year’s Women in Franchising event, which brought together women from a cross-section of age groups and industries. Wilkins has also found the time to visit Google’s London HQ for the bfa Specialist Seminar, which inspired her column this month on the latest Google research and developments in location search.

Jane Maudsley

The Little Voices franchisor spent a large chunk of the last few months glamming up for prestigious events. Not long after being nominated in the Women in Business Awards, Maudsley was off to Buckingham Palace in November for the 60th Anniversary of the National Youth Theatre. And all this hobnobbing has inspired her latest column on the value of entering yourself into awards – even if you don’t end up winning.

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NEWS Festive furore

Domino’s takes a bigger slice It has been a busy old year for Domino’s, the food franchise. Not only did the brand introduce high-flying plans to deliver pizza by drone, canoe and even reindeer in 2016, but the company has also announced that it is to roll out another 700 branches in the UK over the next few years. Having already estimated that it will

have 950 stores in Britain by the end of this year, the franchise has announced that it aims to grow that number to 1,600 restaurants in the foreseeable future, upping its previous target of 1,200. From where we’re standing, it certainly seems as if Domino’s is topping off the year in style.

Stay safe out there

bfa - AGM 2016 December 8 Hyatt Regency, Birmingham, B1 2JZ Department for International Trade - Web Optimisation and Digital Marketing Masterclass December 15 Innovation House, Riverside Park, Raynesway, DE21 7BF

NatWest Franchise Seminar January 17 RBS/NatWest Building, 280 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 4RB

The British & International Franchise Exhibition January 20-21 Olympia, Hammersmith Road, London, W14 8UX

EWIF South Regional Meeting January 19 Mundays, Cedar House, 78 Portsmouth Road, Cobham, KT11 1AN

EWIF London regional meeting January 26 Under 1 Roof Kids, Unit 9 The IO centre, Skeffington Street, London, SE18 6SR

A full event listing is available on our website:

December 2016 | elitefranchise

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WORDS: Eric Johansson


Given that Old Man Winter is just around the corner, it’s even more important than usual to stay alert behind the wheel as the roads become slippery with ice and frost. Driver Hire, the road transport and logistics staffing franchise, has certainly done its part by supporting Road Safety Week, which runs from November 21-27. Organised by the road safety charity Brake, the campaign encourages drivers to follow six rules to keep themselves on the road: sticking to speed limits, staying sober, using seat belts, avoiding distractions, taking regular eye tests and considering other forms of transport for short journeys. Here’s to a happy and safe Christmas for everyone.

It may be the season to be jolly but frequent patrons of McDonald’s weren’t too happy when the fast-food franchise unveiled its new Christmas menu. It wasn’t that they were disappointed with the new additions to the menu. No, what left them aghast was the absence of the traditional mincemeat-and-custardfilled Festive Pie. Taking to Twitter, fans voiced their dismay at this jarring break from tradition and wondered whether the new Festive Cheese Feast or Terry’s Chocolate Orange McFlurry would ever be able to fill the void left by the much-loved Festive Pie. However, customers may find solace in the fact that McDonald’s hasn’t closed the door on bringing back the pie some time in the future. At least they know what to put on their Christmas lists this year.


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Pip Wilkins, chief executive, bfa

Is your business losing customers online? Why franchises need to keep up with the pace of technological change

The bfa recently held a seminar at the Google offices in London with speakers from Google, Google partner Push and the Franchise Centre. It was an eyeopening day for all that brought home the importance of having a strong online presence. The way we consume media has changed dramatically. TV used to be the most popular media format but in 2016 digital is taking the top spot, with the average adult spending over four and a half hours a day consuming digital media according to a report from eMarketer. The rise of smartphone technology has meant that we have constant and immediate access to all the information that we want at our fingertips. It’s important to remember this when you’re designing your website and thinking about your presence on search engines. According to Ofcom, the independent regulator for the communications industry, more people in the UK access the internet through a mobile device than a desktop. This means that making sure your website is responsive and optimised for mobile is more important than ever. If it’s not, you

could be putting potential customers off. In fact, Google’s research has revealed that 61% of people will leave your website if they can’t find the information they’re looking for straight away and 46% said that waiting for slow pages to load is what they dislike most when browsing the web on a mobile device. Google also considers mobile-friendliness when ranking websites, so making your site responsive gives you the best chances of ranking highly. Google’s location services are also becoming increasingly more important when looking at the user journey. In fact, according to Google 30% of all searches now include some sort of location data and 61% of people conduct local research just a day or less before buying something. When people are looking for a nearby restaurant for example, they no longer search for ‘fish and chips in London’. Instead, they’re likelier to search for ‘fish and chips’, knowing that Google knows where they are and will bring up the results nearest to them. This means that it’s important to make the most of services like Google My Business so your location data is as accurate as possible, making it easier for people to find you. The digital landscape is changing at a rapid pace and it’s often hard to keep up. But by maintaining your website with up-to-date information and making it as easy as possible for people to navigate it on any device is the best place to start. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Claire Robinson, managing director, Extra Help

The value of meeting face-to-face Email or video is no substitute for bringing your franchise network together in person

Perhaps one of the most important things when it comes to building a successful franchise network as a franchisor is frequent and effective communication with your franchisees, whether it’s about the day-to-day running of the business or their training requirements. But in this day and age, it’s all too tempting to rely on email to communicate, bypassing face-to-face interactions. This is a big mistake as it not only makes franchising less personal but it can also make your

franchisees feel less motivated. You need to remember that franchisees bought into your business because of you and your ability to communicate

with them. They wanted to feel like a member of a wider business family. Good franchisors communicate with their franchisees using different avenues, not just relying on the occasional email or newsletter. They understand that relationships are built with dialogue and personal interaction. This can be quite challenging when franchises are spread out across the country, so the network’s annual general meeting (AGM) offers franchisors the perfect opportunity to reconnect with their franchisees and keep the lines of communication open. Traditionally, franchisors use their AGM to review the progress they’ve made over the past year, discuss future plans and address any key issues affecting the business and the sector. However, these meetings can be so much more. The last thing a franchisor should do is overwhelm franchisees with information and miss a great opportunity for team building and collaboration. Apart from selecting a venue that’s convenient for everybody, you need to ensure that the space is versatile and allows you to plan other activities around your meeting. Remember: the formal business of the AGM doesn’t

have to be the only thing that happens at the event. Interesting speakers and informative sessions can make it more appealing to the franchisees. Invite speakers who will share their expert knowledge on business topics your franchisees need to know more about, such as PR and social media, and use the time to hold training sessions too. For example, at Extra Help’s last AGM we gave franchisees the opportunity to complete psychometric assessments, which helped them understand how to cope better with pressure and identify their leadership styles or preferred methods of communication. Recognition is also an important part of building a positive business culture. It’s easy to get caught up with financial targets and assume that your franchisees already know that you appreciate their hard work because their figures look good. So why not organise your own internal awards, with categories such as Best Customer Service or Fastest-growing Franchisee of the Year? This will not only recognise your franchisees’ hard work but will also reinforce your network’s values. Last but not least, don’t forget to have fun and relax. Our annual meeting gives us the chance to unwind and get to know each other better. And after the official meeting, we usually go out for dinner and drinks. This makes everyone feel like they’re part of the family and encourages collaboration across the network. Find out what your franchisees enjoy doing and organise some fun time as well. After all, you know what they say about all work and no play. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Sussanne Chambers

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Sussanne Chambers

Closer to home Having helped build a range of startups into major national brands, it’s safe to say that Sussanne Chambers, founder of HomeXperts, has some serious entrepreneurial credentials. But it was perhaps her parents that had the most influence on her professional trajectory BY JOSH RUSSELL / PHOTOGRAPHY BY EMILIE SANDY

haping startups during the height of the dotcom boom and building brands for FTSE 250 firms certainly gave Sussanne Chambers the experience she needed to qgrow HomeXperts into an award-winning estate and lettings franchise. But in her mind, there’s no doubt that her parents played the most significant role setting her on that path. Her father in particular proved to be a real source of inspiration: the recipient of a Queen’s Award for Technical Innovation, he invented both the first piece of microelectronics to be installed in a car and the first pacemaker implant, which forms the basis of the model still used to this day. “My father taught me I could achieve whatever I wanted in life,” Chambers says. “He always encouraged me to strive and to really believe in myself.” Despite this, as a child Chambers wasn’t particularly enamoured of the academic life, something in no small part down to the abolition of the grammar school system the year before she was due to begin high school. “Because of the new system, I couldn’t go to the school I wanted to attend,” she says. Instead Chambers threw herself into the world of work: she held three paper rounds up until she left


school at 16, at which point she moved into retail, coming to carry out the marketing for two independent stores. But it was when she entered the newspaper industry that she really found her niche. “For the first time, I was part of a high-performing team working with like-minded people,” she says. “I loved creating something new, seeing my work in print every week.” Working her way up through the ranks of a local news organisation, she soon helped launch a new title covering Dudley in the west Midlands before stepping up to become group marketing manager and overseeing 16 titles. “From there, I moved to a national brand, started working on trade titles and eventually became the youngest publisher within my sector,” she says. A significant change in direction came for Chambers after the business she founded to provide synchronised editorial to free TV magazines merged with the Press Association. “I was headhunted for a sales director role at a young, fast-growing insurance company,” says Chambers. When the business was subsequently acquired by the FTSE 250 insurance provider Helphire in 1997, Chambers was tasked with setting up a new sales team for Angel Assistance, one of its insurance products. “I learnt so much

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Sussanne Chambers

while working there,” she says. “Even though the company was growing so fast, it became clear culture and atmosphere really was key in getting the most out of the team.” But Chambers wasn’t only learning on the job: overcoming her previous distaste for academia, she began studying for her business and finance HND in the evenings after work before going on to do a full degree. Never one to do things by half measures, during her final year she also decided to study for an Institute of Marketing diploma. “It was quite challenging,” she says. “While I was attending university three nights a week and studying for my diploma, I was pregnant with my first child.” Having only a brief respite to give birth to her son, Chambers was soon back to the books but thankfully all that hard work paid off when she passed her assessments with flying colours. “I loved it: I actually won the national award for the best strategic exam from the Chartered Institute or Marketing,” she says. Clearly picking up on this indefatigable spirit, in 2000 Goal PLC, a scrappy e-learning enterprise, sought her out to help build its sales and customer-support team prior to its floatation on AIM that April. “By that time, I’d established myself as a startup specialist,” she says. “It was brilliant fun: setting up the company, starting from a single sheet of paper.” However, while building a tech-based business at the height of the dotcom boom was an exciting journey, getting people living in the era of dialup modems to see how tuition could be integrated with tech wasn’t easy. “It was challenging getting people to understand the online offering and how it would really benefit the education of children,” Chambers says. “Today it’s a model that we just take for granted.” Having helped grow her team at Goal PLC to

35 employees, a break from the frenetic pace of startup life came when Chambers’ husband was offered a job on the Hawaiian island of Maui. “It was a really lovely: my four-year-old son and I had such fun playing on the beach each day,” she says. Initially, Chambers had planned to stay home with her son on their return to the UK but she saw a vacancy for a sales director just up the road at BizzEnergy, the independent energy supplier. Given many of her previous roles had involved a long commute to places like Bristol, Bath or London, she knew she couldn’t pass up the chance of a job closer to her family and applied. “Instead of getting the director of sales job, they offered me director of marketing and asked me to create a new brand for the company,” she says. Over the course of the next seven years, Chambers helped grow BizzEnergy from a startup to a business with a turnover of over £180m, which she feels was an invaluable experience. “I was really lucky to be working with an energetic, exciting, high-performing board that had a real can-do attitude,” she says. “They empowered me to make decisions and live with the consequences of the choices I made.” Without a doubt, Chambers believes that helping to grow these kinds of businesses imparted many of the skills she would need to eventually build one of her own, in part because working at a startup encourages people to become generalists. “There’s rarely a cluster of staff to help you in the early days, so frequently if you want a job doing you just have to roll up your sleeves and do it yourself,” she says. But while these roles were the perfect primer on how to grow a startup, it was actually a side interest that finally gave Chambers the impetus to start something new. “My husband and I became prolific investors and my passion for property was ignited,” she says “Basically I stopped buying shoes and started buying houses as a hobby.” However, when building her property portfolio, she began to become frustrated with the poor level of service she’d often receive from estate agents. Fortunately, while she and her husband were looking for a holiday home in the US, they came into contact with a very different kind of agent. “They did everything they could to make the transaction as smooth and stress free as possible,” she says. “I started to think ‘why can’t I get a great service like this from my estate agent in the UK?’” Eager to create an agency with a different approach, in 2009 Chambers began sizing up the UK competition, as well as looking further afield to agencies in the States, Canada and Australia. “Without any estate-agency experience, I dissected the traditional model,” she says. “I found many practices were designed for the benefit of the agent and not the customer.” Armed with this insight, Chambers spent the next nine months establishing a model that turned this tactic on its head. “Putting things back

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Sussanne Chambers

My husband and I became prolific investors and my passion for property was ignited

together, I created something much more customer-centric,” she says. Franchising would be key to this new approach, which is why it was built into the company’s very foundations. “HomeXperts was intended as a business in a box from the start,” says Chambers. “There were no legacy systems, no workarounds: everything was designed specifically for franchisees.” The fact that the business had to deal with few of the problems associated with converting to a franchise model later in a company’s life meant that beginning to build a network for the franchise was quite straightforward. To begin with, HomeXperts took a slow and steady approach when it came to bringing on board new franchisees. “Our acquisition strategy was to recruit people who understood we were

a young, growing franchise that was changing and developing,” Chambers says. Beginning with its own website and quickly supplementing this with advertising on franchise portals, HomeXperts began to bring in a steady stream of franchisees. And before long it began to get attention from other areas, turning this trickle into a torrent. “Because the model was really exciting, we started to get some really great coverage in both the regional and national press,” she says. “That really helped promote the brand.” Having been greeted by such overwhelming interest, it was important for HomeXperts to be able to form a clear picture of the kind of franchisees it was looking to recruit. “Our franchisees come from all walks of life, from those with estate and lettings agency

experience to people with no experience at all,” Chambers says. While many of the industry specific skills can be taught, in Chambers’ eyes perhaps the most important characteristics for a prospective franchisee to have are a determination to deliver a great level of service and a positive attitude. “I always say that this is not a property business: it’s a people business,” she says. “We’re looking for franchisees who want to make a difference by helping people with the biggest purchase of their lives.” As long as franchisees have this tenacity, HomeXperts’ comprehensive training programme can help take them the rest of the way. “It’s packed from day one to the end,” says Chambers. After a pre-training day that runs the franchisee through the things

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Sussanne Chambers

those changes is part of how we support our franchisees,” she says. But this isn’t all that’s changed: whilst Chambers was once responsible for overseeing everything from writing policies to creating marketing plans, she’s now freer to focus on the long-term goals of the business. “These days I have a great team of talented people to fulfil those roles,” she says. “My job now is looking at the strategic direction of the company.” However there’s one area where Chambers still maintains a hands-on approach: she insists on meeting every potential franchisee personally to make sure they pass muster. “I’m so passionate about recruiting the right people to the HomeXperts brand, I’m still involved in every recruitment decision we make,” she says. Certainly this approach seems to paying dividends, with awards and plaudits being showered both on HomeXperts and its founder. Not only did Chambers get the gong for Female Franchisor of the Year at this year’s NatWest EWIF awards but her franchise has been named The Sunday Times’ Best Estate Agency Franchise three years in a row and Best Letting Agency Franchise two years running. “These awards are hard to win and even harder to maintain – just doing what you did the year before is nowhere near enough to win next time,” she says. “So being recognised consistently for three years shows how we’re continuing to invest in the brand.” And the numbers seem to back up the judges’ faith in the brand. Not only is HomeXperts on target to have 50 franchisees across England and Wales by the close of 2016 but it’s proving a smash with consumers, with 100% of its customers saying they would recommend it to family and friends. “Our franchisees nationally get over 80% of their business from recommendations,” says Chambers. “Which says it all really.” As for the future of the business, Chambers is intending to kick the franchise into a new phase of growth by courting a whole new demographic of franchisee. “Next year, we plan to double the size of the business,” she says. “As well as startups, we’re also recruiting established estate and lettings agencies.” But no matter how it scales, Chambers is insistent that it will retain the values that have helped it achieve such recognition. “HomeXperts is so much more than a brand,” she concludes. “It’s a representation of the talented team of caring individuals who transformed a business model into a way of life for our franchisees.”

We’re looking for franchisees who want to make a difference by helping people with the biggest purchase of their lives they’ll need to do to set up their business, they attend a two-week intensive training academy blending theory, roleplay and practical elements. And this support continues once the franchisee opens their franchise, with monthly mentoring, quarterly franchise meetings and annual business reviews – not to mention an award-winning online operations manual that holds over 1,000 training documents and over 300 webinars and videos. “It’s updated every day by a dedicated team member and it’s a living work of art,” she says. And it’s perhaps this that truly sets HomeXperts apart from the competition: its commitment to training people who work under its brand. “We’re the first franchise to include National Federation of Property Professional qualifications as part of our franchise package, which really gives our franchisees the commercial advantage,” Chambers says. However, franchisees aren’t the only ones expected to adhere to this standard: Chambers herself has taken these exams, as well as joining a whole host of industry bodies such as the National Association of Estate Agents and the Association of Residential Letting Agents. “The industry is always changing and keeping ahead of 22

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New life of Action Redundancy provided the investment for a future with ActionCOACH for Helen Pethybridge


had worked in senior HR roles for 13 years at global brands before redundancy allowed me to take some time out to consider my future. It was clear that changes were coming at PepsiCo and I wanted a change but I didn’t want to downgrade, as I’d always worked with the best. I’d always had the desire to one day run my own business but had no clear idea of what to do. Finding the right franchise My research online took me to the bfa’s website. I clicked through to business services franchises and found business coaching. I was immediately excited about this option, seeing that business coaching would give me the chance to be involved in parts of a company’s strategy that extend far beyond HR. After making an enquiry, two franchise brochures arrived in the post within 24 hours of each other. I was immediately attracted to the ActionCOACH brochure, which was colourful and showed a diverse cross-section of people enjoying a range of group activities. It gave a greater sense of what I could expect from the team culture I decided to take ActionCOACH through to the due diligence stage, as it showed potential for a great income without topping out. At the end of January, I went to Las Vegas for ActionCOACH University. Over ten days, I got to totally immerse myself in the culture and training to set myself up as best I could. The calibre of the trainers was excellent and that’s continued into all aspects of support I’ve 24

received from the UK team. During the training process, ActionCOACH’s exclusive client generation centre was working to secure initial meetings with prospective clients and this is how I signed my first client. And whilst redundancy forces you to take stock of your life, it also provides a financial payout. This allowed me to take the time to develop my new business without feeling the pressure of delivering a salary immediately. Setting up your business is so time-consuming – even seemingly straightforward tasks like choosing the right printer can be labour-intensive. So being part of a franchise that gives you over 3,500 strategies and tactics to help your clients and a wealth of ongoing professional development sessions really helps you to get to grips with your business. Growing my business I was most nervous about selling to secure new clients. However,

ActionCOACH gave me the right training to help me overcome this. I feel more comfortable promoting ActionCOACH the service than promoting myself. One of the suggestions was that we practise our client generation seminar on friends and family. I invited my old team from PepsiCo to this dry run and their feedback was really positive. I signed my second client from my first public seminar and the following clients came from ActionCOACH’s exclusive client generation centre. Each client has fortnightly one-toone coaching and this generates nearly £5,000 a month.

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I’ve just started to run ActionCLUB, which will initially bring in £1,000 a month from group coaching. My goal is to take on another four clients by the end of my first year so that I reach £10,000 a month in client income. My long-term vision for the business is to employ coaches and a business development manager. In control of my future In my HR roles, I had made people redundant and they had often felt out of control and at the mercy of recruiters. Choosing a franchise can change all that. Coming out of the corporate environment and into a franchise was like a stepping stone to starting up on my own. The support and collaboration at ActionCOACH has been outstanding. I feel like I’ve got as many friends at work as I did in my corporate life. I’m an extrovert and I get energy from other people. As an Action Coach, I still get that interaction and energy from my fellow franchise owners. My husband Guy and I have two teenage boys. Guy travels with

Pethybridge enjoying her new-found free time horse riding

work and, having cut out my long commute to work every day, I made two commitments to myself. Firstly, I wanted to get to watch my sons at their I didn’t Wednesday afternoon want to school rugby matches. I wanted a downgrade, Secondly, horse-riding lesson as I’d always each week to improve worked with my skills and enjoy something just for me. the best Before being made redundant, I was the main breadwinner in the family. It felt good knowing that I could use this redundancy money as an investment opportunity to future-proof my career. I’m now in control of my destiny, where the speed of progression is my choice and it’s up to me to decide when I want to reduce

my hours, when I retire and what work I choose to do. Redundancy forced a change and ActionCOACH delivered a new beginning. If you’re inspired by Helen’s success story and you: A: get a buzz from helping others succeed, B: love learning and developing yourself and C: have enjoyed success in your career or sport, then find out more by watching the six-minute overview video at ACTI002

Sector: Business services Website: Email: Contact No. 01284 701 648 Investment: £20k-£50k

December 2016 | elitefranchise

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02/12/2016 15:36

“I felt that it was a business model I could excel in .” Jyoti Kohli, Franchise Owner Bluebird Care Haringey

Be part of the most experienced care franchise in the UK Bluebird Care has revolutionised the way care is delivered by concentrating on high quality customer service, whilst at the same time upholding the very best in professional care provision. With over 200 offices across the UK and Ireland, Bluebird Care is fast becoming the nation’s foremost provider of homecare. Bluebird Care boasts over 40 years care provision and franchise experience and is part of the Interim Healthcare Inc. Group, one of the largest care franchise groups in the world. We have the knowledge and experience to support franchise owners at every stage of their business, which has led to the enormous success the brand has achieved. Please contact our franchise recruitment manager, Carole Stubbs, to find out more about our proven business model. 01730 260 026 Bluebird Care Franchises Ltd, Charles Street, Petersfield, Hampshire GU32 3EH BLUE003 Untitled-4 1

05/12/2016 17:16

Nigel Toplis, managing director, The Bardon Group

Why it’s wrong to speak of buying a franchise So if you think of the arrangement as being like a lease then franchisees should be getting a system that’s always live and thus constantly subject to change, upgrades and improvement. But in order for franchisees to access this live system and take advantage of the constant alterations, tweaks and refinements it benefits from, there’s a range of costs applicable. Firstly, there’s the licence fee, which gives the franchisee the right to use the franchisor’s system, brand and trademarks. It also allows them to take advantage of all the investment that’s gone into developing the process, Franchisees aren’t making a methodologies, collateral and tools that are intrinsic to the business. The cost of the licence will vary across franchisors one-time purchase when they but generally it will be around 25% to 40% of the total cost invest in a franchise – and the of the franchise. Any higher and you should ask why. A franchisor needs to have an ongoing revenue stream fees involved reflect this and this is achieved through a management fee – otherwise known as a royalty. Payment of this ongoing lease cost entitles the franchisee access to the system, support, tools, programmes, advice and head-office personnel. And, again, When I first started in franchising, like most people this rate will vary from franchisor to franchisor. I thought that franchisors sold a franchise and Licence and management fees are the main costs franchisees bought it. However, I was soon put in my associated with buying a franchise but there could be place by Moshe Gerstenhaber, founder of Kall Kwik and further costs, depending on the business my mentor, who educated me that good franchising was in fact an effective and Franchisees should be type. These may include the shop fit, efficient form of system leasing. And getting a system that’s equipment, training, marketing launch programme, finance package or contact when you think about it as leasing a always live and thus management system. system, things actually make more sense. constantly subject to As a franchisee, you need to determine When you buy a product or service, change, upgrades and if the franchise package offers you value you get something that is defined and improvement for money. Take advice from a bank, fixed. You buy the shoes, wear them and an accountant or both to put together a eventually throw them out. You never proper business plan. Interrogate the franchisor about their buy a pair of shoes then take them back to the shop after a support and speak to existing franchisees to ensure you’re year and say that because your feet have changed you need absolutely clear about what the franchise package includes. them altered. Conversely, with a franchise you’re always in That should ensure your franchise is as comfortable as an discussion with the cobbler; the franchisor is constantly old shoe for years to come. reviewing and refining stheir system. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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30/11/2016 17:10


Passionate property insurance franchisees F For a budding franchisees looking for a working life they’ll really enjoy, should give Concept Building Solutions a try

ind something you love to do on their shoulders. They ensure that and you’ll never have to work a the policyholder’s home or business day in your life”. That old adage premises are restored to pre-loss has been attributed to different people conditions as soon as humanly throughout the ages but the meaning possible and with minimal disruption remains the same. to their busy lives. That desire to enjoy working life is Of course, franchisees cannot live what Concept, the property insurance on enjoyment and happiness alone – claims management franchise, making money does help. Enjoying looks for in new what you do and franchisees. As a providing a muchthe Concept provider of a free needed service while Building Solutions representation service making a six-figure franchise has to building insurance income is a great continued to grow policyholders, it’s recipe. It’s the notand prosper over imperative that so-secret ingredient the last 13 years new franchisees are to the recipe that has passionate about enabled the Concept ensuring that policyholders receive the Building Solutions franchise to best representation possible and are continuously grow and prosper for the treated fairly during the claim process. last 13 years. This is probably why Concept The Concept franchise is costed at franchisees really enjoy releaving £27,995 plus vat and can be funded clients from the stress weighing down via startup loans of up to £25,000 over five years at six percent unsecured. It’s a complete turnkey franchise package. The highest level of training, mentoring and support is provided over a six-month period to ensure new franchisees succeed. Due to this high level of training and support, experience in building or insurance is not a necessity. However, a passion for customer service and the ability to communicate effectively are.

CONC003 0800 0370 315 28

elitefranchise | December 2016

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02/12/2016 17:35

Tony Bowman, managing director, etyres

Put yourself at the top of your franchise wishlist Now is the time for making a list and checking it twice. But when it comes to choosing a franchise, this isn’t just something you should just do at Christmas

A lot of big retailers such as John Lewis have incorporated wishlist icons into their websites. Not only is this a great way to tell your loved ones what you want for Christmas but it’s also a good starting point when you take your first steps towards choosing a franchise. While on the face of it all franchises look tempting, it’s what’s under the wrapping and bows that counts. You need to know exactly what you’re getting, otherwise the opportunity may not live up to your expectations. And – unlike a garish tie or a boring ironing board cover – you won’t be able to exchange it for something you like more. When it comes to due dilligence, it’s important to ask a handful of questions about the price, territory, experience, financial projections and what the ongoing support from the franchisor will look like. But I strongly urge you to put your own personal goals, expectations, aspirations and level of commitment at the top of your list when considering which franchise is right for you. You’re going to be making a huge investment in your future – not just financially but also emotionally – so you need to make the right decision and that requires being a realist. The franchisor has a legal obligation to not misrepresent the franchise but equally the prospective franchisee has a similar duty to the

franchisor, not to mention themselves. In every case, you should carry out a harsh self-examination before making one of the biggest decisions of your life. Over 20 years in the franchise industry, we’ve seen more than a few prospective franchisees who have misjudged what would be required of them. They have underestimated the amount of effort and the level of commitment that will be needed or chosen to ignore and not disclose existing debts. Others have lifestyle aspirations, such as frequent or While on the lengthy holidays, that won’t be or possible in the early face of it all practical stages of growing a new business. franchises look The franchisor will do all they can to tempting, it is tease out these issues but that’s not what’s under the always possible, particularly if that information is intentionally withheld. wrapping and If both sides follow this code of bows that counts practice, the relationship will stand every chance of success. But if either side fails to be brutally honest and realistic, the likelihood of failure is much greater. So when you’re drawing up a wishlist of what you want to put into and get out of your new franchise, be brutally honest with yourself. The best matches are those where both sides meet each other’s expectations. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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30/11/2016 18:08

Having only dived into the world of baby swimming in 2011, the founders of Turtle Tots are already making waves across the globe BY ERIC JOHANSSON



aby Lixton was amazed when her daughter was born. And while the emotions of a water birth certainly altered the course of her life, what really astonished her was how her child behaved. “She was underneath the water for a few moments when suddenly her amphibian reflex kicked in and she swam to the surface,” Lixton says. Four weeks later, when she brought her new-born toddler to her first baby-swimming lesson she did it again. “It was absolutely wonderful and life-changing,” says Lixton. “That’s when I decided to become a baby-swim teacher.” Not one to rest on her laurels, in 2006 Lixton joined Water Babies, the baby-swimming franchise, as a franchisee and over the following six years she grew the businesses until it was teaching over 900 toddlers to swim per week. Then, in 2011, she

decided to take the plunge and break out on her own, launching Turtle Tots, the baby-swimming franchise. “I brainstormed so many names but I decided on this one because my family has always loved turtles,” she says. “I adored the alliteration and that the name signalled that we were in the baby business.” Given her experience and the similarities between Water Babies and Turtle Tots, you may be surprised to hear that Lixton initially didn’t have any plans to franchise the new enterprise. “It wasn’t until six months later that I realised that both the company and other people would benefit from it,” she says. However, that wasn’t the only thing that changed during that initial period. While Lixton was submerging herself in the realities of her new venture, another entrepreneur was also creating ripples across Bristol: Caroline Sparks, the founder of Little Monster Baby and Toddler Shows, an exhibition company for new parents. The two business women had previously met at a mutual friend’s wedding. When Lixton launched Turtle Tots, that same friend urged the pair to meet up for a chat to share their tips and experiences of running companies in the same market. One meeting lead to a second and a third. “And when Gaby asked me to join her

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turtle tots

and to franchise Turtle Tots, I ended up selling Little Monster without a second thought,” says Sparks. Together they set themselves upon the task of turning their joint venture into a success. To do this, the pair put £10,000 each into the enterprise and spent days in Lixton’s garden ironing out the details of how to franchise the business. During those sessions in the sun, they focused on three things that would enable Turtle Tots to truly blow the competition out of the water: a cashflow forecast, a marketing plan and the creation of a new website. The website in particular required the most attention: it needed to both accommodate franchisee recruitment and microsites for the new franchisees that would soon join the business. That being said, it turned out that the website’s recruitment tools weren’t necessary to attract Turtle Tots’ first candidate. “Our first franchisee was actually one of the mums from my class in Bristol,” says Lixton. Much like Lixton herself, the woman had gone to one of the baby-swimming classes and fallen in love with the concept. And in the years since, 60% of Turtle Tots’ franchisees have joined the business the same way. “It’s absolutely wonderful,” says Lixton. Given that the experience of joining a Turtle Tots class has persuaded several new mothers to become part of the business, clearly providing a great experience for parents and babies is a part of what sets Turtle Tots apart from other babyswimming franchises. “We develop great relationships with our clients,” Lixton says. “Joining our classes doesn’t feel like a chore because our teachers know the parents and what their babies’ names are. That combined with our teachers’ passion creates a family feel that our customers really love.”

To ensure that each franchisee can establish that intimate relationship, the co-founders are adamant about how important it is to recruit the right franchisees. “Before joining us, they’ve usually have had children, which means they’ve developed the natural empathy and understanding they need for this market,” says Sparks. Turtle Tots also looks for franchisees who’ve acquired transferable skills from previous careers: amongst the current franchisees, there are a few teachers, a GP, a former head of marketing and an ex-biochemist. Those previous careers also demonstrate that potential candidates contemplating joining the business have strong work ethics. “I cannot stress this enough: it’s really challenging,” says Sparks. “Sure it’s flexible but you need to be ready to work hard.”

However, while know-how from previous jobs goes a long way, it’s not enough to ensure that budding franchisees know what they’re doing. “We want our customers in Aberdeen to have the same amazing experience as they would be getting in Cornwall,” says Lixton. “Obviously it takes a lot of work to ensure that consistency. That’s why Turtle Tots doesn’t throw its budding franchisees in at the deep end but gives them rigorous training before setting them off on their new endeavours. Not only are new recruits required to possess a certificate from the Swimming Teachers’ Association,

I cannot stress this enough: it’s really challenging Caroline Sparks, Turtle Tots

December 2016 | elitefranchise

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We won’t stop until we’re all over the country Gaby Lixton, Turtle Tots

the world’s largest independent swimming teaching and lifesaving organisation, they also have to conduct 30 supervised lessons at Turtle Tots. On top of that, they spend several weeks acquainting themselves with the business model and its values, getting photography lessons and learning about business development and marketing. And it doesn’t stop there. Once new franchisees launch their franchise, they get access to ongoing training through Turtle Tots’ custom-made e-learning platform and through in-house lectures. This focus on not only finding the right people but ensuring that they are appropriately onboarded has enabled Turtle Tots to grow organically from its first franchise in Berkshire to covering a quarter of the UK. Furthermore, it has helped the business fulfil another longheld aspiration: expanding the company beyond Britain’s shores. “We’ve always had the ambition to go global,” says Lixton. And in February 2015, the co-founders finally had the chance to prove their model internationally when the brother of one of their Scottish franchisees set up the company’s first franchise in Ireland. “It was quite interesting actually,” says Sparks. “We usually think that Ireland is very similar to us but there are actually a few cultural differences like how they check background references.” One year after the launch, the Dublin franchise is flourishing and the experience gained from setting up the international pilot franchise enabled Turtle Tots to go down under and launch the business in Australia. And further international expansion is on the horizon. “Right now, we’re looking for the right business 32

partners to help us launch in Canada, the US, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea,” says Lixton. However, while the co-founders are heading to New York in the beginning of 2017 to find their next international franchisee, they’re still very much focused on expanding their business further across Blighty. “We won’t stop until we’re all over the country,” says Lixton. Almost seven years after Turtle Tots first tested the waters in Bristol, the company has grown to having 45 franchisees and 150 teachers in three countries teaching over 10,000 children every week. Looking back on the years gone by, Sparks’ decision to join the franchise has certainly paid off. “It’s been a rollercoaster ride with plenty of highlights,” she concludes. “But we wouldn’t change a thing.”

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BIO-RITE Working with the NHS

FRANCHISE OPPORTUNITY BENEFITS: • A BFA provisional member • 40 years experience in infection control • Providing services to the NHS, Local Authorities, Care and Nursing Homes and other institutions where infections are a threat • Job security, a growing market and high income potential • Large and exclusive territory • Comprehensive training and full business support


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07/09/2016 14:15 19:41 05/08/2016

Location scouting

location location location T

he tempting waft of butter and sugary deliciousness usually hits you when you’re most likely to crave a calorie fix – while waiting for a train, shopping for groceries or stopping off at a petrol station during a long drive. This is no accident: food businesses like Dunkin’ Donuts have long recognised the importance of setting up shop in the right spot. “We offer a very flexible approach to securing real estate,” says Jeremy Vitaro, vice president of international development at Dunkin’ Brands. The brand has many fully fledged outlets in places like busy airports and train stations where it knows people are looking for snacks. But on top of that, it also has pop-up sites and kiosks in a number of shopping centres and petrol stations where it can’t commit to a full store. For most franchises, finding a location with enough footfall is key – especially if the model relies on impulse buying. And one of the indicators that you’ll draw in the crowds is the presence of nearby public transport networks. But not every business can secure prime spots next to train stations. “We try to find a balance,” says Riccardo Scala, founder of Beat Theory Fitness, the personal-training franchise. “We want to be no more than a few streets away from an underground or train station so people can walk to us easily but not so near that it’s unaffordable.” However, it’s not just a numbers game: a location needs to bring the right sort of people through the door. This means that having a crystal-clear understanding of who you want


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From transport links to the presence of a Waitrose, the choice of location can make or break a franchise BY MARIA BARR

to target and their lifestyle is vital. At Beat Theory Fitness, Scala knows exactly what segment of the market he needs to court. “The type of client we’re targeting isn’t affluent,” he explains. “It’s the person who cares about their health, has tried and failed to get fit on their own but can’t afford a personal trainer.” And once you’ve got that figured out, you can choose a location based on indicators such as the type of shops in the surrounding area or the average house prices. “Believe it or not, we look at which supermarkets are in the area,” says Scala. “We figure that the sort of people who go to Waitrose or Marks & Spencer are

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Location scouting

sophisticated tools willing to spend a bit The UK available that can more money on their has a very help aggregate traffic food. So it’s more competitive patterns, peak times, likely that they’ll also coffee demographic and be willing to invest market so lifestyle data and even in their health and carry out competitive fitness.” it can take analyses. “We use But even in areas some time a number of tools, that are generally to find the including software, to very busy and seem right spot determine if a location to fit your target Berenike Seeberg-Elverfeldt, has the right footfall,” market, you can get Coffee-Bike says Vitaro. dead zones: areas Even with the people just don’t latest technology, though, renting a seem to walk past. To minimise the permanent location for years doesn’t chances of renting a dud location, make sense for all franchises – it can sometimes pay off to leave especially if demand is seasonal. And human judgement aside and turn to that perhaps explains the popularity of technology. There are a lot of very

pop-ups: an alternative to bricks-andmortar stores that allow businesses to have a temporary presence to test their concept or get a sense of whether a particular area might be a good fit in the future. The Coffee-Bike franchise has been built with this kind of flexibility in mind. Through a network of franchisees, it sells coffee, tea and hot chocolates from a mobile shop on wheels. And while some franchisees stay in one spot and get to know the regulars, others follow the biggest events to capitalise on the footfall. “Our franchisees appreciate having the flexibility of being able to move where the demand is,” says Berenike SeebergElverfeldt, international franchise manager at Coffee-Bike. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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30/11/2016 17:05

Location scouting

Getting to know your neighbours Whether a potential location is permanent or temporary, it can pay to scope out the competition. Some franchises prefer to carve out a place for themselves away from the competition so the footfall isn’t diluted. “Competition is a factor, especially in city centres,” notes Seeberg-Elverfeldt. “The UK has a very competitive coffee market so it can take some time to find the right spot.” That being said, the fact that your competition has chosen an area could suggest they’re onto something. Clustering is a recognised phenomenon whereby similar businesses gather together to enjoy economies of scale –


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something that can be seen on many high streets where there are clone businesses existing side by side. If you think you have a good chance of winning enough business while being in close proximity to a competitor, it could be a wise strategic move to join them. For example, as Scala scopes out new franchise locations for Beat Theory Fitness in London, he’s looking for areas that already have a number of fitness brands because the business is designed to act as an add-on to gym memberships. “We don’t shy away from these businesses because we want to be in places that already have a fitness presence,” he says. “We could exist literally next door to a gym.”

We don’t shy away from the gyms because we want to be in places that already have a fitness presence Riccardo Scala, Beat Theory Fitness

A joint effort One of the barriers holding businesses in the UK back is the cost of premises, especially in cities like London where gentrification is rampant. And it’s not just rentals: there’s also the legal costs, deposits and unexpected remodelling bills, which can derail many a franchise’s momentum when they’re trying to expand. “Affordability is an issue,” says Scala. “Across the UK, price is a major factor.” Which is why the role of the franchisor in the process is so crucial. “From the legal side, the councils can place a lot of restrictions around street trading permits so we support our franchisees with that,” says Seeberg-Elverfeldt. “We’re also in a better position to use our contacts to work out deals with the big chains or negotiate rents. We often help them with their pitches to retailers because we have the experience.” That being said, while a franchisor knows the business and market inside out, the franchisee has all the local knowledge. Although choosing a location is often the role for the franchisor, input from the franchisee often makes the choice a lot more successful. “Our franchisees have great ideas, so we always have a joint discussion with them when it comes to securing a location,” concludes Seeberg-Elverfeldt.

elitefranchise | December 2016

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07/09/2016 14:11 19:42 01/09/2016


Enjoy Your Life Today… With Maid2Clean Buying a Franchise is likely to be the most important decision you will make. Maid2Clean is not a new franchise, to the market, it is, a established, and growing, management franchise for the right people


iven that buying a franchise is likely to be the most important decision you’ll ever make, it’s paramount that you pick the right franchisor. Anyone pondering which one to buy into is well-advised to check out Maid2Clean, the established and growing management franchise. Maid2Clean already has over 160 franchisees who have committed themselves to the business as they


believe its support gives them a chance to grow their income and because they believe Maid2Clean is the top franchise in its field. Minimal risk Always aiming to reduce its already low operating costs and to keep a high-profit margin, Maid2Clean often works with its franchisees to solve the ever-growing demand for domestic cleaners.

Budding franchisees get the chance to build their own business while still working with their current employer – something 55% of its franchisees did when they initially invested in their futures with Maid2Clean. No previous industry experience is required. Anyone interested in joining Maid2Clean better act fast as 75% of its territories have already been sold in the UK, resulting in the business having to turn down many people that inquire about a franchise in a specific area. That said, Maid2Clean’s selection criteria are not based on aspiring franchisees’ academic qualifications but at their attitude and determination to succeed. Make no mistake: Maid2Clean is not a cleaning business. It’s a whitecollar management franchise that appeals to both men and women, individuals and partnerships. Its business system has been established for many years and has been thoroughly tested and refined into today’s franchise offer. And Mike Hanrahan, managing director of Maid2Clean, attributes the success of the franchise to its franchisees. “Our franchisees have taken it upon themselves, each quarter, to host a business improvement day in different places in the UK specifically designed to share best practice ideas with other franchisees, such is the strength and enthusiasm for the business within the franchise,” he says. “I don’t know of another franchise where this type of pro-activity takes on such a wide scale.”

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According to the bfa, the average cost of becoming a franchisee is around £53,000. And while some franchises may cost even more, Maid2Clean recognises that many capable people cannot afford costs as high as that and offers a franchise package at a very low investment. Maid2Clean franchisees also benefit from its residual income system that gives new franchisees the opportunity to increase their income every month. Maid2Clean attributes the success of its recruitment model that ranks discipline and following a proven system higher than raw talent. For this business, a healthy work ethic will always outperform all other business skills and traits. Franchisees are not doing the cleaning themselves but are managing the workers that do as well as maintaining and dealing with the clients, suppliers and customers. The demand for this service continues to out-strips supply and this trend is forecasted to continue indefinitely. Meet David and Kristina Given that David Brookes and Kristina Jonsson had already run a bar in Spain for five years, it’s safe to say that they were no strangers to running a business together when they bought their Maid2Clean franchise together.

While they had spent ten years in Sweden, where Jonsson took a degree in computer science and Brookes was an HGV driver, they were both eager to start their own business together again when Maid2Clean caught Jonsson’s eye. Looking at the offering, the couple decided to up sticks and move from Sweden to set up Maid2Clean in Norwich. “Maid2Clean offered a ready-made, established business with an excellent reputation, for under £10,000, so it was a bit of a ‘no brainer’ really,” says Brookes. “The training we received was fantastic and the on-going support is excellent and it’s comforting to know that it’s there when needed. We also learned a lot from the other franchisees on the Maid2Clean forum.” That support proved vital as the new franchisees faced the challenge of securing good cleaners who would stick at their job. Thanks to the support from others in the network, the couple feels they’ve become better at it over time and with experience. Maid2Clean also helped them spread the word of their new businesses through its use of leaflet marketing. “We did not fully appreciate the vital importance of local leaflet distribution

but we are just about to start a 15,000 leaflet run in Norwich, at a rate of 1,000 a week,” says Brookes. “It has taken us a year to learn how the company runs along with all the ups and downs of the business.” As their experience has grown so have their ambitions and they are expecting a big growth this year. Their aim is to push up to 100 clients. “Buying our Maid2 Clean franchise has been worth every penny,” says Brookes. “It’s a great opportunity to grow a business that does not take that much time to operate.” ARCM001

If you are looking for your first, or your next business investment then contact us today: 0845 257 0677 December 2016 | elitefranchise

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30/11/2016 16:59

Dum Dum Donutterie

Doughnuts with a

difference Doughnut master Paul Hurley is taking a Shoreditch-approved franchise to the Middle East, home to the world’s most discerning consumers of luxury brands BY MARIA BARR


n Dum Dum Donutterie’s flagship Shoreditch branch, plump doughnuts sit prettily on a counter in shades of blush pink and lime green or boldly naked and topped with cream, tempting East End hipsters and the odd socialmedia star or celebrity – Peter Andre and beauty volgger Zoella are fans. But by closing time, the counters have been emptied by customers, ready to be restocked with more goodies the following morning. Dum Dum Donutterie – a nod to the European patisserie and craft American doughnut shops that influenced its creation – is the brainchild of Paul Hurley: baker, entrepreneur and lover of doughnuts. Having started his career aged 16 working at Dunkin’ Donuts, Hurley worked his way up and got to know the business from many different angles, from production and sales to operations and planning. He also developed a penchant for doughnuts, whether glazed, filled or modestly dusted with sugar. “Nobody knows more about doughnuts than me,” he proclaims. When Hurley broke away from the US master franchise in the 1990s, he wasn’t ready to leave the doughnut world behind him. After travelling around France and Italy, working in patisseries and learning how to create baked delicacies with finesse, he returned to Britain with a dream of creating the best doughnut in the world. Teaming up with a friend from his Dunkin’ Donuts days, Hurley had a few false starts but eventually the duo perfected a baked doughnut that was lower in fat than your typical American version and used superior base ingredients. 40

“I even know exactly which farm my flour is grown in,” he says. Aesthetics were of equal importance and Hurley drew on his patisserie training in France to make sure the finished product looked the part too. The duo secured a patent for the method and started supplying unbranded doughnuts to top retailers. But a personal tragedy – the death of both his mother and business partner within the span of five months – prompted Hurley to reassess his model. “It was just me, so I decided to do things exactly how I wanted and tuned out any outside opinions to prevent my concept from getting watered down,” he says. “Then if it didn’t work out, I only had myself to blame.”

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Dum Dum Donutterie

So in 2013, Hurley launched Dum Dum Donutterie and opened its flagship outlet in Boxpark, Shoreditch. The choice of location was no accident as Hurley knew that if he couldn’t win over the ultra-savvy customers in the area, he’d have to rethink his approach. “It was almost a challenge for me: they’re such a discerning, cool crowd,” he says. “People in Shoreditch are very welcoming of honest, authentic products. You can’t pull the wool over their eyes.” Hurley’s commitment to his craft and adoption of artisanal methods won them over: soon people were buzzing about this hot new shop selling unusual flavours and doughnuts too pretty not to post on Instagram. Hurley only closed the shop when he had sold out completely, which he did quite easily. Celebrities and social-media influencers helped create a buzz online without any prompting from the company. In fact, the franchisor admits he didn’t know much about social media in the early days. “I realised that if they can be bothered to post about us I should at least try to become more au fait with social media,” he says. “I took a ‘build it and they will come’ approach, which thankfully paid off.” The positive word of mouth continued to build and within months the brand was in Harrods. Soon, enquiries about franchising opportunities started to pour in from all around the globe. And, thanks to his foray into franchising earlier in his career, Hurley knew it was the best model to help him to introduce his doughnuts to the world. “With franchising, you’ve got people who are invested in helping you grow, rather than a manager who will never care about your business as much as you do,” he says. “There’s a sense that we’re all in it together and I like that.” Seeing it as the gateway to the Middle East, Hurley chose Dubai as Dum Dum Donutterie’s first international outpost, with a second franchise outlet in Qatar following soon after. Part of the franchise’s appeal overseas lies in its Britishness – particularly its associations with London and Harrods. “People tend to look to London to see what the next trend might be and the fact that we’re the only doughnut brand in Harrods has cachet abroad,” he says. “Brand Britain is very strong in places like Asia and the Middle East.”

People in Shoreditch are very welcoming of honest, authentic products. You can’t pull the wool over their eyes

December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Dum Dum Donutterie

And while Hurley ensures that the public gets a consistent experience whether they’re in London or Qatar, he’s also keen to work with his chefs on the ground to ensure the menus are given a local twist. “I don’t pretend to know everything, so although I keep strict control over the brand, I love hearing ideas,” he says. A joint collaboration that saw Hurley fly to Dubai to work with his bakers has produced localised doughnuts that incorporate flavours like rose, cardamom, cinnamon and pistachio. “I love being in the kitchen and working on new ideas,” he enthuses. Hurley is equally committed to staying innovative at home. The magic happens in his patisserie in Chelmsford, where the baker has invented popular flavours like creme brulee, a cronut-like pastry – which he claims he was popularising long before Dominique Ansel’s croissantdoughnut craze – and the crone, a doughnut shaped like an icecream cone. “We just like playing

and coming up with things that look nice,” he explains. And that sense of play is what led Hurley’s team to invent the world’s most expensive doughnut for an event on behalf of Just Eat, the food-delivery startup. “We figured we’d forget about the cost and just go for it because we might be able to apply whatever we developed to our regular line,” he says. The invention, which contained top-notch ingredients like Iranian saffron and an edible gold-leaf decoration, was a hit and Hurley was pleased but perhaps slightly bemused when he discovered reviews from Japanese tourists who had travelled especially to London to taste it. But there has been one side effect of all the tastings and openings. As he’s grown Dum Dum, Hurley has also developed a slight tum tum. “Admittedly I’ve put on a bit of weight since I started the business but you wouldn’t want to buy a doughnut from a skinny guy, would you?” Is he concerned about the health

You wouldn’t want to buy a donut from a skinny guy, would you?

impact of his creations, especially with mounting concerns about obesity in the UK? “We treat people like adults and are transparent about our ingredients so people can make an informed decision – we’re not making salads here,” he says. “And your body needs a bit of sugar and fat: it’s about balance.” Hurley will certainly need the fortification as he embarks on an even greater international push. Not only is the franchisor exploring options in other parts of the Middle East but he’s also got his eye on making inroads in Europe, Asia and the US so that he eventually has an outlet in every international city. And with the pound still sitting low due to the uncertainty surrounding the impact of the Brexit vote, international interest has ramped up even more. “There’s never been a better time for people living abroad to buy a British franchise with an international presence,” he says. 42

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5 brands 5

Five Brands Five Opportunities opportunities 1 award-winning One Award Winning Company



05/12/2016 16:57



The premier garment alteration and repair franchise in the UK The ZipYard is the most successful and fastest growing garment alteration franchise in the UK and Ireland. With its distinctive yellow and black corporate colours, it’s one of the most recognised brands on the high street


ith exceptional growth potential – the opportunities for new and existing franchise owners are limitless. Part of The Bardon Group stable of franchises, all franchisees benefit from firstclass ongoing business support, excellent training and comprehensive marketing programmes, tools and collateral.

 ince opening, the S reaction has been amazing and business is going so well that we have opened a second centre  Richard McConnell, franchise owner in Altrincham and Wilmslow

With over 70 years’ experience in franchising, the management team are very much on the franchisee’s side and there to advise, guide and support the franchisee with business development and help recruit experienced seamstresses, dress makers and tailors. Franchisees need to be as dedicated, passionate, focused and hard working as the franchisor’s team is. However, new franchisees don’t need to be familiar with repairs or alternations as the franchise isn’t looking for tailors or tailoresses. Successful franchisees will be ambitious to run their own business, customer driven, organised and keen to follow a proven business system. All ZipYard centres are finished to a distinctive specification, with a corporate image designed to stand out in the marketplace. 44

Experience to date suggests that a unit of around 600 sq.ft. to 800 sq.ft. is the ideal size for a ZipYard centre – where the initial fit out will include industrial sewing machines, blind hemmer, over locker, button holer, ironing station, computer, till and software programme, EPOS system, stock, corporate branding and merchandising Additionally, new centres will have a complete shop fit – including but not limited to external and internal signage; fitting rooms; counters; flooring; fixtures and fittings. By investing in the franchise, budding franchisees will be given a fully operational and fully supported business, with trained staff and comprehensive marketing activity from day one. The market potential is huge and ZipYard expect all their new centres to be profitable in the first year – and interestingly the clothing alteration business is not economy driven.

The brand has a very professional image which is reflected in the quality of the shopfit, online presence and all of the marketing collateral provided by the franchisor. Additionally, there’s a high level of business support and all franchisees also have free access to a very proactive PR agency. None of this could be replicated easily if you set up on your own business from scratch

DETAILS: Investment level: £38,500 + VAT + Shop fit Business type: Retail Franchise contact: Emma Downes The ZipYard Unit 2, Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE Tel: 01530 513307 Email: Web:

Graeme Mulheron, The ZipYard Bedford

elitefranchise | December 2016


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Recognising the Potential Every organisation needs to increase its recognition factor, whether it’s a multinational corporation, a medium-sized charity or a local flower shop


ecognition Express franchisees can serve all of these markets, whether it be 100,000 name badges a year to a major airline or supplying personalised umbrellas to local hairdressers to lend to their customers. Companies not only seek to generate recognition on a corporate level, but they strive to give it to their employees. Name badges provide instant identification and credibility, whilst performance award schemes provide excellent staff motivation.

 ou get what you are Y promised. The training is excellent and afterwards there is always someone on the end of a phone to help you get to grips with everything. Nigel himself still visits me regularly and is particularly helpful at business strategies Stuart Fisher, Recognition Express Harrow

Recognition Express has been successfully operating franchises in the corporate recognition and promotional products market since 1979. It’s a market leader with over 35 years experience. It’s the most successful franchise network for the sector in this country, with over 50 franchisees in the UK and Europe. From business gifts and promotional products to personalised name badges,

I’ve been a Recognition Express franchisee since 1981, which means I’ve seen how the business has developed and improved every year. The business today is very different from when I launched. There’s a huge emphasis on branding and marketing – a focus on making Recognition Express the first choice for our customers. The market has also changed too, due to the growing importance of branding to any business. This means that there’s a lot more potential – any business can be considered a potential client Paul Mitchell, Recognition Express franchisee, Slough

medals, plaques and trophies to the full range of corporate clothing and uniforms for schools – the range is extensive and at £3bn plus the estimated market is huge. Hardworking, organised, ambitious and driven prospective franchisees with good people skills are sure to fit in with the company’s ethos. As a successful company operating in the business to business sector, Recognition Express has been a full member of the bfa since 1980, and is a former winner of the bfa Franchisor of the Year award. The company’s markets are extensive and growing and Recognition Express is geared to help new franchisees serve them profitably. The company is renowned for its high level of ongoing support, advice and programmes – specifically, but not solely, in the areas of marketing, sales, product sourcing, technology and business planning. Centrally designed, managed and implemented direct marketing programmes form the backbone of the company’s marketing systems and are augmented by high quality collateral, marketing tools and ongoing training designed to drive business growth, client contact and brand awareness. Recognition Express is a true businessto-business franchise opportunity for those people who’re looking for a proven and successful management franchise.

DETAILS: Investment level: £35,000 + VAT Business type: Branded promotional items Franchise contact: Emma Downes Recognition Express Unit 2, Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE Tel: 01530 513300 Email:


December 2016 | elitefranchise



05/12/2016 16:59



The UK’s leading specialist system hygiene business Techclean started trading in 1983 and since then we have become the UK’s leading specialist system hygiene business.


echclean are proud to provide a comprehensive range of specialist system cleaning solutions to a diverse range of customers from FTSE 100’s to government to local businesses, charities, schools and even medical establishments amongst others. The franchise cleans PCs, laptops, printers, photocopiers, fax machines, scanners, telephones, EPOS, ATM’s and other system peripherals. In addition, it’s a market leader in the provision of computer room, data room and communications room cleaning services, with a tried and tested approach for carrying out this specialised cleaning. Techclean is a customer-centric business offering advice and practical solutions to its customers and is recognised as an authority in the sector with robust cleaning processes and procedures using products unique to the franchise. The company is ISO 9001 and safecontractor accredited – an internationally recognised quality system which provide customers with immediate credibility.


Techclean is a customer centric company offering a broad range of specialist services to a wide range of customers and we need franchise owners with the ambition, communication skills, drive and energy to maximise the business opportunity in their own territory Nigel Toplis, managing director of Techclean

Techclean offers one of the best value franchise opportunities currently available. Given that the relationship between the franchisee and the franchisor is critical to the long-term success of the business, Techclean believes recognising this relationship like it’s a marriage in the sense that budding franchisees must trust the franchisor as a business and a partner. The Techclean team has extensive knowledge of franchising and are well-versed in sales, marketing, procurement, finance or business planning. The franchisor believes in supporting new franchisees fully in their marketing efforts, The Bardon Group have years of experience creating excellent marketing tools, programmes and collateral that are effective and practical for franchisees to follow alongside the other demands of the business. Centralised direct marketing is at the heart of this approach with mailings being sent out to the person with the money, authority and need. This is also followed up by phone calls through a specialist agency to secure appointments for the franchisee to attend. This activity is backed up by regular email marketing, a comprehensive range brochure, product leaflets and other relevant collateral.

DETAILS: Investment level: £19,500 + VAT Business type: Specialist system hygiene Franchise contact: Emma Downes Techclean Unit 2, Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE Tel: 01530 513308 Email: Web:

elitefranchise | December 2016


05/12/2016 17:00


Teachers love it parents want it children need it


Children learn best when they are having fun at the same time and it’s that premise which underpins ComputerXplorers.


nyone looking to run their own business, take control of their future and make a genuine difference to children’s lives are advised to check out ComputerXplorers’ franchisees. The company is part of the world’s largest franchised network providing quality technology education for children and allows you to work from home. It’s the leading provider of quality technology education for children from the ages of three to 13.ComputerXplorers deliver are engaging, educational and fun clubs and classes. They are run in a variety of settings such as after school clubs, preschool and nurseries, summer camps and in-curriculum time classes. ComputerXplorers’ goal is to help children discover new technology and computer skills through innovative exploration of a wide range of the latest technology.

One of the reasons I chose ComputerXplorers was the knowledge that the Franchisor had an excellent pedigree in the market and being a former British Franchise Association Chairman affirms this. The initial training was in 2 main stages UK & USA and both courses have been thorough and exceeded my expectations. I have been particularly impressed with the openness and approachability that the franchise offers as far as support and advice are concerned John McGill, ComputerXplorers, South West Scotland

For pre-school children ComputerXplorers covers everything from podcasting, digital photography, programming and robotics to digital microscopes and an introduction to the internet. Primary school children learn programming, digital storytelling,

animation, web design, coding, forensic science, video game design, music technology and much more. Classes are linked to the national curriculum in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. The potential market in the UK is huge with more than 11m children, at least 34,000 nurseries and pre-school groups, over 24,000 primary schools and numerous afterschool clubs and holiday schemes.

I always feel we are very well supported and the franchisor is always keen to share his knowledge and experience. Having a team like that who can be relied upon to give you their attention and support is a real comfort in business Stephen Hall, ComputerXplorers, Birmingham East

Prospective ComputerXplorers franchisees can rest assure that they’re making a good business decision considering that the company has over 30 years’ experience in the US, is a recognised expert in children’s computer education with a dedicated team of education professionals, has continuing programme of curriculum development and software review. In addition to this, the company also offers a regular supply of new software options, ongoing one to one business advice and business planning, professionally developed sales system, a range of seminars and ongoing training opportunities for franchisees and their staff. Every new franchisee will also benefit from three weeks of comprehensive training programme. Two weeks of traning will be in the US and one week at the UK headquarters in Leicestershire. Above all though ComputerXplorers is about education with a small E and fun with a capital F.

DETAILS: Investment level: £29,500 + VAT Business type: Children’s computer tuition Franchise contact: Emma Downes ComputerXplorers Unit 2, Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE Tel: 01530 513308 Email:


December 2016 | elitefranchise



05/12/2016 17:02



A 21st century opportunity Kall Kwik has been in business since 1979 and with around 50 centres, it’s proud to be the UK market leader in the provision of print, design and other business services to the local community


all Kwik centres provide first-class services and offer bespoke solutions rather than a fixed product range. The company achieve high average order values and excellent profit margins selling to a broad and diverse customer base. The business is not subject to the fluctuating demands of the retail market and Kall Kwik franchisees can influence the level of demand for the services by actively generating sales through their own effort and determination.

Kall Kwik is not easy, it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme but if you are looking for a partner to help develop your own long term ambitions to create a successful business it could work for you. It certainly worked for me Terry Woods, Kall Kwik Chiswick

It’s evident that only those businesses who embrace change will succeed in today’s market and by establishing the Kall Kwik business services concept, the company is certain to remain the market leader in the provision of the full range of communication services to businesses. 48

Kall Kwik Business Services Developments in communications technology and digital print capability combined with changes in customer buying habits have enabled Kall Kwik to evolve the company’s proposition. In today’s world, this franchisor no longer needs huge printing presses, extensive premises nor tens of thousands of pounds tied up in associated equipment. Today is much more about brain over brawn, about adaptability over print set up and about providing not one answer but a number of potential solutions. The Kall Kwik business services concept offers a lower entry cost to the marketplace and by outsourcing high-end production ensures lower on-going operating costs. By being very front-end and customer focused Kall Kwik has widened the range of services the company offers. It has also devoted time and energy to fully develop its client base as well as the products and services it delivers. The company is a firm believer in collaborative working, providing a range of solutions and having multiple income streams as well as developing customer relationships. This has allowed Kall Kwik to deliver a range of products and services across the whole spectrum of communication media; it’s more than just ink on paper. In fact the centres will concentrate on print design, website design, direct mail, email marketing, online print management, digital colour, digital black and white, posters and banners, plan printing, scanning and archiving, marketing management for SMEs and full-colour print.

The philosophy Kall Kwik’s commitment to quality and excellence underpins the business’s entire culture. Given that the company has high standards for it franchisees, the franchisor expect them to demand advisory excellence, superb training and marketing tools as well as high-quality products and services in return. Kall Kwik wants new franchisees to care about the success of their clients and be determined to play their part in achieving the Kall Kwik vision. However, the franchisor thinks the most important thing is that new franchisees are passionate about the business, the clients and success.

DETAILS: Investment level: £50,000 + VAT + Shop fit Business type: Print, design and marketing services Franchise contact: Emma Downes Kall Kwik Unit 2, Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE Tel: 01530 513300 Email: Web:

elitefranchise | December 2016


05/12/2016 17:01

Late payments

The problem with late payments With the franchising sector in such a healthy state, it’s important that we don’t let debtors derail businesses and cause terminal cashflow problems BY Mark Scott, director of franchise development, Natwest

December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Late payments


recent survey by the bfa and NatWest revealed that franchising as a sector has much to be optimistic about. Many of the most familiar names on the high street are franchises, although consumers may not always know it. Franchises in the UK generate around £15.1bn a year and over the past decade, the number of people employed in the industry has increased by 70% to 621,000 while its contribution to the economy has grown by 46%. But even the fastestgrowing and most successful franchises can get tripped over by the chronic problem of late payments. While the industry remains buoyant, there is a worrying trend of late payments that’s taking its toll on some franchises.

The scale of the problem At NatWest, we’ve seen first-hand the knock-on effect that late payments can have on some of our franchisee customers. The inability to pay employees and suppliers can lead to an increase in financial stress. Whether your turnover is £2m or £25m, being owed money can put a strain on your supply chain, force you to lay off staff, cut back on growth or acquisitions and even create a culture where you have to write off payments on a regular basis. Late payments can strangle the growth of small businesses in particular, cutting off the supply of funds that enable a business to progress and develop. And even for larger companies that have their own finance teams, the problem of late payments can still have a massive effect. When a business doesn’t get paid, it can have a huge knock-on effect and cause serious financial problems. And while the presence of cashflow issues may seem to indicate that a business is struggling, the opposite is often true. That’s because as a franchise grows and looks to expand, the money it needs to pay for work in progress also increases. These overheads are funded by income from

previous jobs or suppliers, so late payments can hinder a firm’s ability to flourish. Several reports also paint a concerning picture. A study by Ormsby Street, the fintech startup, revealed that the average time taken to pay a supplier among a list of 20 major retailers they looked at was 45 days beyond terms. Furthermore, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has found just how severe late payments can be. Of the small businesses they studied, 37% had run into cashflow difficulties, 30% had turned to an overdraft to tide them over and 20% said late payments have hit their profits. And for some, the stress was too much and their business went under. The FSB also found that in 2014, if it weren’t for payments being tardy, 50,000 business deaths could have been avoided. This would have added £2.5bn to the UK economy – a not insignificant sum. The road to recovery? The amount owed in late payments to businesses back in 2008 was £18.6bn. But since then, the figure has spiralled to around £40bn, which is why the new Enterprise Bill was announced in the Queen’s speech in 2015. Under the voluntary Prompt Payment Code, businesses are encouraged to pay debts within 30 days as standard, with a 60-day maximum limit. Part of this was the appointment of a small business commissioner to tackle late payments who can name and shame companies that persistently fail to pay on time. With these measures,

Late payments can strangle the growth of small businesses in particular 50

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Late payments

It isn’t enough to send an invoice and wait for a response and payment – you need to apply pressure on those who just aren’t coughing up the problem is expected to improve sooner rather than later. But while action on the part of government is welcome, franchises also need to be proactive to protect themselves. It isn’t enough to send an invoice and wait for a response and payment – you need to apply pressure on those who just aren’t coughing up, while remaining tactful and polite so no bridges are burned. And when you are chasing payment, ensure you’re contacting someone in a position to take action at the customer’s accounts office. Also bear in mind that emails can be easily ignored: a conversation is more likely to result in success when chasing late payment. Experience helps too: over time, the people working in your accounts department will develop relationships with their counterparts and figure out

who are the good payers and who might need some prompting. However, it’s not just about chasing debtors: preventing late payments starts when you’re drawing up invoices. Your invoices must have the correct information, including clear payment terms. Getting the purchase order number or other details wrong will delay payment. It’s also advisable to run a credit check before working with a new customer to ensure they’re creditworthy, particularly ahead of large orders. It can also help to include a late-payments clause that lets people know that if they are late, they’ll be charged interest. Having to go to the higher powers to action this may seem a last resort but my advice is to not let problems spiral out of control. Ultimately, franchises should be aware of their capital reserves and cashflow forecasts and do everything they can to prevent late payments so surprises can be minimised. It always pays to keep track of your cashflow. You may have large reserves enabling you to wait a bit longer for a payment but this will soon be eaten into if too many customers begin to drag their feet. Forecasting 12 months ahead to know exactly what money will be needed and when is crucial. Whatever your issues with late payments, there are solutions and preventative measures. All the experts advise that your top priority should be to deal with the problem fast, accurately and politely. Sometimes just a little nudge is all it takes. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Carving out your career in property How HomeXperts franchisees are becoming their own boss and earning a living while getting the support they need


hoosing the right franchise sector for you – one that uses your skills and inspires you – can be tough. And while you may have preconceptions about estate and lettings agency franchises, many people in the UK are carving out rewarding career paths in the sector. But while some estate agents are still using old-fashioned practices, HomeXperts has gone from strength to strength since launching in 2009, establishing a successful network of 48 franchisees thanks to its award-winning business model. And Sussanne Chambers, the franchise’s founder and managing director, isn’t planning on stopping there. “We’re confident of growing our network to include 100 personal agents by the end of 2017, she says. HomeXperts franchisees have achieved great success under the guidance of Sussanne and her team. In fact, 73% of franchisees have joined the HomeXperts High Flyers’ Club after earning more than £10,000 in commission in a calendar month. One franchisee from the Midlands reached the £10,000 mark for six months in a row, achieving a personal record of £22,795. Another franchisee joined the High Flyers’ Club in April 2016 and went on to claim the members title for four out of the next five months. There are many more stories like these that show how determined self-starters can achieve success using the HomeXperts business model. One of the most impressive aspects of the franchise model is the training and support franchisees receive. For example, a new 12-week kick start programme ensures that all new franchisees have their business up and running the Monday after they finish their two-week induction. This enables them to focus on winning new


business straight away. The 24/7 HomeXperts Hub also allows franchisees to revisit their training at any time from anywhere, making it even easier for budding franchisees to become their own boss. There’s a huge amount of support and training to suit people who have varying levels of experience in the industry. For Robert Pain, buying a franchise provided the tools he needed to take the next step and become his own boss. “After working as an estate agent for 25 years, it was time to go it alone. But I wasn’t really alone, of course, because I had so much support,” he says. “I investigated several estate agent franchises but the support network, branding and sheer professionalism of HomeXperts made it stand out from the others,” he adds. Offer HomeXperts is feeling festive, so if you sign your franchise agreement by December 31, 2016, it will give you a 50% larger franchise territory. Call 01905 678850 to speak to a member of its friendly recruitment team. Alternatively, you can email with any questions you may have and a member of the team will get back to you as soon as possible.

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Wanted Property Entrepreneurs

Are you Ready to Deliver a World-Class Customer Service? Join a National-Award-Winning Property Franchise - HomeXperts

Jason & Gaya chose HomeXperts for their support and training... “There are a number of reasons why I chose HomeXperts. I have worked in estate agency for approximately 17 years and enjoyed building a good name, contacts and market awareness. I have also been a landlord and let property for over 10 years. The HomeXperts franchise enabled me to continue working in the area that I have great knowledge and contacts while offering me Jason & Gaya Barnett, greater flexibility running my business working from home. As I enter my second year my business is healthy, growing at a rate of HomeXperts Worcester knots and I have established a reputation for excellent customer service which is creating some excellent referral business for HomeXperts.

Sussanne Chambers, Managing Director and Founder, accepting The Sunday Times’ Gold award for Best Estate Agency Franchise from Matt Dawson MBE

It scares me now that I may have missed out on this amazing opportunity by not having the courage to branch out on my own. But with the support of the amazing team at the Central Support Office my dreams are coming true.”

Happy Franchisees n



HomeXperts received a rating of 88% in the Lloyds TSB Franchise Benchmark Satisfaction Survey, the highest rating for any property Franchise.


Impressive Training


HomeXperts is the only property franchise delivering an industry-leading monthly programme of Continual Professional Development.


Serious Franchisee Support n


An individual launch marketing plan and marketing campaign enable franchisees to hit the ground running. We work with you to make your business a success. To register to attend a Discovery Meeting near you, visit or email at us at



Our top franchisees become members of the HomeXperts ‘Altitude Club’ by earning more than £25,000 in a month in invoiced commissions. Clever marketing has helped our franchisees to achieve profitability and sustainable businesses. Our intensive training academy trains to National Federation of Property Professional (NFOPP) standards. 12 weeks Kick Start programme to guide new franchisees through their business set up process.

Each franchisee has an On-boarding Manager to guide them through the launch processes and business development. Monthly business reviews to discuss your progress. To join HomeXperts call us on

01905 678850


lettings franchise


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for SEO Why getting everyone on board – from local franchisees on the ground to the CEO – is vital when embarking on a search engine optimisation campaign BY Alex Cavell, pr and marketing manager, Bluebird Care


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ritons rarely make a decision – whether it’s to enquire about a franchise opportunity or book a service – without turning to a search engine. Franchises ignore search at their peril, even those that don’t sell online. But for search engine optimisation (SEO) to be effective, it’s important to put a rigorous planning process in place that factors in a wide range of stakeholders from across the franchise network. Firstly, you need to understand the behaviour of search engines and how they treat their rankings. Google, for instance, invests in monitoring and predicting human behaviour online. It collects data from a huge number of sources and is adept at putting

elitefranchise | December 2016

07/12/2016 09:45


together an accurate picture of a person’s interests, habits and online history. And while search engines try to work out how people behave, search marketers spend a lot of their time attempting to understand how search engines rank sites in a quest to get the first page. For a search campaign to be effective it’s also important to decipher what you’re trying to achieve from a business perspective and judge how much time and resources it’s worth investing. It also helps you to define what success looks like and set measurable KPIs. Whether you’re growing, consolidating or reducing your market share, it’s important to reach an agreement on what success looks

like. How will you identify and measure success? How are your competitors likely to react and what can you do to limit their ability to imitate? How long is the campaign going to run for and who are the stakeholders involved? Strong, clear answers to these questions will stand any campaign in good stead. But to get accurate answers, you’ll need to involve stakeholders from across the spectrum. This can mean anyone from senior management to marketers, the people responsible for uploading content and designers. Planning for SEO shouldn’t just consider algorithms and keywords: it’s also about people. Don’t just look at the people who would typically be involved in planning meetings from

Effectively communicating a campaign to stakeholders is a critical step head office either. Customer-service reps who have a lot of customers interactions or local franchisees are often worth involving. It’s important to identify which voices should have input into setting objectives and then who the strategy needs to be communicated to. While SEO campaigns typically fall under the December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Reach out for renewables

Other benefits include:

The renewable market in the UK has a predicted value set to reach £50 billion by 2020 and the sector presents fantastic opportunities for entrepreneurs who want to establish a new business in a rapidly growing market.

• Exclusive products

Green Square is looking for like-minded people to join their team and experience a business model that is in high demand from domestic and commercial customers looking towards greener alternatives for practical renewable energy solutions for the future. The Green Square franchise offers the opportunity to work in an ethical environment and penetrate a ring fenced business area, while minimising the risks associated with starting out alone, with a sales potential of over £1 million in three years.

• Fully certified training and qualifications in renewable technology • Quality Management system for microgeneration technologies in place (MCS) • Supported by legislation • Reasonable franchise fee • Bespoke software allowing full system design and calculations for complex installations • Full marketing support: website, launch event and marketing campaigns • Turn-key business concept

For further information please visit our website, or to express an interest in finding out more information email:

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Whether you’re growing, consolidating or reducing your market share, it’s important to reach agreement on what success looks like

remit of a marketing or digital team, in my experience they’re less effective if you fail to include key stakeholders or bring them in too late in the planning process. In particular, franchises with large networks need to ensure their SEO campaign is a localised one that brings in people from across the network. At Bluebird Care, we recently overhauled our digital strategy to launch over 200 microsites for our UK franchisees. Each website required a locally relevant SEO strategy and what we discovered is that people are often searching for care using local colloquialisms and search terms. To succeed, we involved local franchisees

by explaining the changes and preparing them for what was to come. And because good SEO is also about adhering to best practice when it comes to content uploading, we created guidelines and toolkits to ensure the businesses felt empowered to keep their sites fresh and updated, safe in the knowledge that they weren’t damaging their ranking. It’s often the people implementing your SEO strategy, such as content managers, who are most crucial. They need to understand everything from how to enter meta descriptions correctly to best practice when it comes to alt tags. SEO should also be on the radar of your PR team. Because search engines reward links from quality sites and a high number of shares from influential social media accounts, it’s important that your PR team understands this. It should actively scout for opportunities, such as bringing in guest authors or raising awarness of your brand so more people seek it out on social media or search engines. SEO doesn’t just belong in the online domain. Finally, it’s important to remember to involve your stakeholders in the feedback loop. When you’re dusting off your monthly report on traffic and online conversions, ensure you’re also feeding back any lessons and future actions to the relevant people. Senior management will need to be able to see how their budget has been used to meet the objectives set at the start, while local franchisees may get a huge boost to know that all their efforts have translated into business success. You may even wish to set up a simple campaign dashboard that monitors the data and overall feedback, allowing you to gauge reactions along the way. Whether your SEO campaign is local, regional, national or international, investing in preparation and the people critical to the campaign will almost certainly determine whether your investment is a success. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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A Dynamic and Recession-Proof High-Street Franchise The ZipYard is the fastest-growing garment-alteration franchise in the UK. With distinctive branding and well-planned shop fits that minimise square footage for maximum profit, the opportunity provides owners with a business that is welcome on any high street


fficially launched in Britain by The Bardon Group in 2011, The ZipYard’s growth has been very strong and the company is well on the way to achieving its first target of 50 centres in the UK. The business provides a much needed service and has a real role to play in the rejuvenation of UK high streets. The ZipYard concept offers total flexibility, providing the opportunity to simply run one centre or build a bigger business through owning multiple ZipYard centres throughout the country. Specifically designed to project a stylish, high quality image, the ZipYard offers a wide range of alteration and tailoring services, all done on site by trained professionals in purpose-built, beautifully shopfitted centres, branded with the ZipYard’s signature eye-catching yellow and black colours. From dress restyling and taking in or letting out to bridal-wear fitting and formal wear alterations, The


ZipYard provides convenient, speedy and cost-effective clothing alterations and repairs. The ZipYard franchise package is a total turnkey operation, comprising a complete shop fit, state-of-the-art machinery, computer systems and a comprehensive marketing package that includes regional PR activity. The package includes industrial sewing machines, specialist alteration and repair machinery, a computer, software, EPOS system, signage, fixtures and fittings, various consumables, starting stock, plus training and ongoing support from the franchisor, and a marketing and PR campaign to launch each centre. Why choose The ZipYard? Former driving instructor Richard McConnell opened England’s first ZipYard franchise in Altrincham in 2011 followed by a second centre in Wilmslow in 2013. “We did lots of research in the franchise press and online, and looked into a wide variety of franchises,” says McConnell. “The Altrincham ZipYard has exceeded all of our expectations and the model is so well thought out that it was easy to replicate in Wilmslow. Our reputation went before us and the customer base in the new ZipYard is building very nicely. “Initially it was my wife who noticed the ZipYard advert and she thought it was a fantastic idea. We did some research and quickly realised that there was no real competition in our area. Most of the time clothing repairs

are done as a bolt-on service at dry cleaners. The turn-around time isn’t very good and they don’t offer a very wide range of services.” Marketing Head office provides a wide range of marketing support to the network including email marketing, a comprehensive range of promotional collateral and window posters that are supplied free of charge throughout the year to each centre. All franchisees also have access to a retained PR agency that carries out regular activity on behalf of the ZipYard to raise awareness and generate footfall.

I have been extremely pleased by the success of our ZipYard store so far. As with any business, if you can combine excellence in service with excellence of products you have a winning formula and we certainly have that here at the ZipYard Bedford Graham Mulheron, The ZipYard Bedford

Contact: Emma Downes t: 01530 513307 e: Total Cost:£38,500 + VAT plus shop fit

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Mum’s the word What every franchisor needs to know about managing a network of working mums by maria barr


hroughout Britain, legions of mums are waking up each morning, making packed lunches for their kids, doing the school run and managing the household finances – all while running their own businesses. These so-called mumpreneurs make up a huge part of the economy. According to independent researchers at Development Economics, Britain’s working mums generate around £7.2bn and this figure’s projected to rise to £9.5bn by 2025. For many mums, franchising has been the solution they were looking for, allowing them to find balance, have more control over how many hours they spend away from home and ease them back into working life after maternity leave. Some franchises were built with women, and mums, in mind, while many more are trying to cater to mothers and adjusting their policies so they don’t lose valuable talent. But what is it that mums want and what are the expectations of the franchisor? One of the most obvious demands of working mums, especially if they have young children, is flexibility. “It was a lightbulb moment for me after giving birth,” says Vicky


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Matthews, co-founder at Pink Spaghetti, the remote personal assistant service. “I didn’t want to be checking emails while pushing my child on the swing.” Unfortunately, not all women have a positive experience when they try to return to their job after maternity leave and their need for flexible terms can be treated as an inconvenience. According to the Equality and Human Rights Commission, three-quarters of pregnant women and new mothers experience discrimination at work while each year 54,000 women who return to work after having a baby are subsequently pushed out of their jobs. And even those who are welcomed back with open arms can often struggle to make it work financially. Another study by the British Chambers of Commerce of 1,600 businesses found that one in ten firms have lost employees who found themselves unable to afford the nursery costs. Getting back on the ladder For many of these women, a franchise provides a soft cushioning once they’re ready to ease themselves back into work. After being made redundant from a corporate job during the 2008 recession, Catherine McKinnon, a franchisee at Pink Spaghetti, was more than ready to work after having two children but struggled to find

elitefranchise | December 2016

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is something she thinks every franchisor a job that would justify the hours. “It was needs to consider. really hard: there was nothing that worked Every mum has a different situation and for me in terms of the commute time and the hours they want to work can shift over the finances,” she says. “When I did the time. Some, like Mckinnon, might start out maths and factored in childcare, it just putting in two or three hours per week and didn’t make economic sense.” ramp up thereafter. Others are happy to But rather than start her own business, do twenty or more but then need to wind which can often be even more taxing down if they decide to have in terms of time and another child or want to devote resources, McKinnon While I don’t see more time to their family. settled on a franchise “Everyone works different because it gave her a everyone every hours, returns to work after ready-made formula day, with social different time periods and has that had already been media I feel that different needs,” says Matthews. tried and tested. “I knew I’m part of a much She and her co-founder that they’d already been bigger company Caroline Gowing go out of through all the mistakes their way to accommodate you might make early on,” Catherine McKinnon, Pink Spaghetti mums, whether it’s conducting she says. “It was like I was interviews over Skype or starting a business that offering franchisees remote had already been going mentoring and training videos that can be for 18 months and had all of the wrinkles accessed at all hours, meaning mums can ironed out.” log on at 9am, 12am or the middle of the Most importantly, franchising offered night between feeds if need be. “Flexibility the mum-of-two the chance to pick her is the number one need for working mums own hours. “I started out just covering my and I know that first hand,” Matthews says. costs but now I’m able to focus on growing “It’s so important that they‘re able to choose the business and put more time in,” McKinnon says. And that evolving of needs their hours and be their own boss.” December 2016 | elitefranchise

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When you become a mum, the type of work you do is so much more important because you’re sacrificing time with your children Sarah Jones, LushTums

But while financial stability and flexibility are important, job satisfaction for mumpreneurs is more complex. Many women find that their priorities change after having children and they don’t necessarily want to go back to the way things were. “When you become a mum, the type of work you do is so much more important because you’re sacrificing time with your children,” says Sarah Jones, a mum of two under-fives and franchisee of LushTums Abergavenny, the yoga franchise. “I wanted to do something meaningful and feel that at the end of the day I had really helped somebody.” So as a franchisor, it’s not good enough to stop at offering flexible working: you need to treat mums as individuals with individual needs, not a single


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entity. “Life happens so sticking with people and understanding their circumstances will make them stay with you in long turn,” says Matthews. Similarly, Clare Maddalena, the founder of LushTums, has built her business with mothers in mind and even offers parenting classes to make sure that the mums in her network are happy and supported both at home and at work. “Some women have had bad birth experiences and come to us looking for personal healing,” she says. “We help them figure their stuff out. I’ve worked with over 5,000 women and I’ve learned how to listen to people and acknowledge them as individuals.” Let’s get together There’s something else that mums tend to look for that the

savvy franchisor would do well to cultivate: a sense of community. Because many mothers have given up an office job to work from home, they may find themselves missing office gossip and the impromptu help they might get from a colleague sitting at the next desk. For all its ills, the office can stave off loneliness and venting to colleagues offers a valuable outlet. “It can be quite lonely working from home and not having that office banter,” Jones says. However, it is possible to help women feel like a part of a wider culture – even if they’re working from kitchen tables spread across the country. At LushTums, Maddalena makes a point of recording videos and podcasts to connect with her yoga instructors and organises regular meetups. “It’s really amazing what happens when you get a group of women together,” she says. But when meeting in person isn’t possible, social media can play a pivotal role. At Pink Spaghetti, mums connect in a private Facebook group to share funny stories, troubleshoot problems and swap skills. “While I don’t see everyone every day, with social media I feel that I’m part of a much bigger company,” McKinnon says. “It’s like a miniature MumsNet.” Jones is equally enthusiastic about the power of technology to bring mums together. “Even though not everyone has met in person, we feel we know each other and that’s lovely,” she says.

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Smart Homes

No place like HOME With the rise of smart-home technology, established franchises are faced with the choice of embracing connected devices or seeing themselves fall behind the competition BY ERIC JOHANSSON


n the face of it, the Honeywell Kitchen Computer was an utter bust. When the brightred home appliance appeared on cover of the Nieman Marcus winter catalogue in 1969, it was advertised as the ultimate tool to assist housewives in their quest to prepare the perfect Christmas feast. The machine – which had the not-so-catchy official name H316 – was designed to store recipes and create complete menus based on the flavours of the entrée. But despite these advantages, not a single device was ever sold due to the fact that any buyer would have required enough space to accommodate the 45kg device, some serious engineering skills and $10,600 to spare. While some may argue that the advertisement was just a publicity stunt and that the computer was never intended for mass-adoption by the public, the machine serves as a precursor to modern smart-home technology. Today, not only would the average smartphone put the


H316 to shame, these last few years have also seen the rise of a string of connected devices that can truly assist homeowners. For instance, thermostats, security cameras and light bulbs can now be connected via wifi or Bluetooth and controlled by a simple swipe on your smartphone or just by talking out loud within range of your Amazon Echo speaker. These connected devices are the cornerstones of modern smart-home technology. And given that the accountancy firm PwC is estimating that the connected home market will be worth $149bn globally by 2020, franchises have everything to win by integrating the trend into their business models in order to get a slice of that very profitable pie. And they better do it soon. “Whoever figures this out first will have a gigantic proportion of the market,” says Thomas Rebel, managing director of HomeServe Connect, the connectedhome and energy-efficient boiler franchise. “And the gap between the company that comes first and those that come second and third is going to be huge.”

There aren’t a lot of people who wake up in the morning and get excited about buying a smart thermostat Thomas Rebel, HomeServe

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Smart Homes

Leading the way In real estate, staging refers to the process of a real-estate agent changing a house to make it more sellable. This can include painting a wall a different colour, removing family photographs and now, thanks to Coldwell Banker, the international real-estate franchise, this also includes setting up connected devices. In August, the franchise introduced the world’s first ever smart-home staging kit, which includes installing smart thermostats, smoke alarms, security cameras, door locks and lights: everything you need to make a house a connected one. This is just the latest of moves that has seen the franchise become a real-estate leader by adopting smart-home technology. Previously, the 110-year old company has launched a partnership with CNET, the tech publication, to establish a smart-home standard and developed a training program for its franchisees so that they can learn about the technology. The main reason for these initiatives has to do with the simple rule of supply and demand: house buyers want smart homes. Having recently surveyed 1,250 American adults, the franchise revealed that 54% would choose one over a regular house. Another survey from John Burns Real Estate Consulting found that prospective buyers would pay more for smart That’s why the franchise started to roll out its own smarthomes. Given these studies, Coldwell Banker’s home service earlier this summer. Given that HomeServe, decision to invest in the technology as well, as the home-assistance business, has made a name for itself the training of its people, makes perfect sense. by installing and maintaining boilers as well as plumbing, “As a franchisor, you obviously want to be it made sense for HomeServe to start by expanding its ahead of the curve to help your franchisees,” services to include smart thermostats and early leakagesays David Siroty, vice-president of warning devices. But deciding to start with communications at Coldwell Banker. these devices presented the company with As a franchisor, And franchisees welcomed the another problem: how to sell them. “There you obviously move. “At the same time we were aren’t a lot of people who wake up in the creating our programme, our agents morning and get excited about buying a smart want to be ahead were starting to be questioned thermostat,” says Rebel. “These devices aren’t of the curve by both buyers and sellers about cheap, so you have to find a way to make it to help your smart-home technology,” says meaningful for customers to buy them.” For Siroty. “If we hadn’t done this, our instance, whenever his franchisees are having franchisees agents would’ve lost opportunities a conversation with a customer about a new David Siroty, Coldwell Banker to get sellers and buyers.” boiler, it’s a “pretty good opportunity to start And this is why it will benefit talking about smart thermostats.” franchises to adopt connected devices as a So far, HomeServe franchisees have been given the choice part of their established models: it will help to voluntarily integrate the devices into their own business them seize any new opportunities that present model or to simply go on as usual. “We’re not forcing it themselves. “If you don’t, you’ll just become down our people’s throats,” says Rebel. “We’re just making a smaller and less successful player on the the case that it’s worth doing because it will make your market,” concludes Rebel. customers happier and you’ll end up with more revenue.” 66

elitefranchise | December 2016

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This was our second year exhibiting at the London ExCel Franchise Show and again, we've left with various franchise leads and sales enquiries. Last year, we were able toat open three new franchise This was our second year exhibiting the London ExCel Franchise shops from attending the show this year we hope toand double Show and again, we've left withand various franchise leads sales This was our second year exhibiting at the London ExCel Franchise that. The show is very well presented and arranged and the enquiries. Last year, we were able to open three new franchise Show andour again, we've left with various franchise leads and sales This was second year exhibiting at the London ExCel Franchise communication throughout the process is frequent. We have shops from attending the show and this year we hope to double enquiries. Last year, weleft were able to open three new franchise Show and again, with various franchise leads and sales already made arrangements to attend again next year fortoa third time. that. The show is we've very the wellshow presented and arranged and the shops from attending and this year we hope double enquiries. Last year, we were able to open three new franchise communication thePacking. process isarranged frequent.and We the have - Chloe Sands, Marketing Executive at Postpresented and that. The show isthroughout very the well and shops from attending show and this year we hope to double already made arrangements to attend again next year We for ahave third time. communication throughout the process is frequent. that. The show is very well presented and arranged and the already made arrangements again next year We for ahave third time. - Chloe Sands, Marketing Executive at Post to andattend communication throughout thePacking. process is frequent.

- Chloe Sands, Marketing Executive at Post to andattend Packing. again next year for a third time. already made arrangements We have spoken to - Chloe Sands, Marketing Executive at Post and Packing. some great people, it ExCeL London. hasWe been a busy show have spoken to Every February. and the look and feel some great people, it We have spoken to ExCeL London. of the exhibition is the has been a busy show some great people, it We have spoken to Every February. London. best it has been since and the look and feel We ExCeL also have successfully The event has grown from has been a busy show great people, it Every February. they started! launched Ireland's biggest just 60 brands in 2013 to over ofsome thethe exhibition is feel the ExCeL London. and look and has been a been busy show ever Franchise Show in 160 February - Matt Head of Recruitment, best itexhibition has since We also have successfully The brands event in has grown 2016. from of theO'Neil, is the Every February. and the look and feel Expense Reduction Analysts UK Ltd association with The Irish Next year we plan to have they started! launched Ireland's biggest just 60 brands in 2013 to over best it has been since We also Association. have successfully The event has grown from of the exhibition is the Franchise more 200. ever Franchise in 160 in February - Matt O'Neil, Head of started! Recruitment, Had a great show in they launched Ireland'sShow biggest just brands 60than brands in 2013 to2016. over best has been since We also have successfully The event has grown from ExpenseitReduction Analysts UK Ltd association with The Irish Nextbrands year we plan to 2016. have ever Franchise Show in 160 in February London! Talked to - Matt O'Neil, Head of Recruitment, they started! launched Ireland's biggest just 60 brands in 2013 to over Franchise Association. Expense Reduction Analysts UK Ltd more than 200. association with The Irish great potential clients Next year we plan to 2016. have Had a great show in ever Franchise Show in 160 brands in February Matt O'Neil, Head of Recruitment, Franchise Association. more than 200. about expanding London! Talked Expense Reduction Analysts UK to Ltd association with The Irish Had a great show in Next year we plan to have Coyote Ugly in India, great potential clients Franchise Association. London! Talked to more than 200. Had a great show in UK, Ireland, Italy, about expanding great potential clients London! Talked to Slovakia, and Coyote Ugly inmore!" India, about expanding great potential clients - Justin Livingston, Coyote Ugly UK, Ireland, Italy, Coyote Ugly in India, about expanding Saloon Slovakia, and more!" UK, Ireland, Italy, Coyote Ugly in India, Justin Livingston, Coyote Ugly Slovakia, and more!" UK, Ireland, Italy, Saloon

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Bank lending

The legalities U of bank lending Stumping up the cash required to buy a franchise will often involve borrowing from a bank. But it’s important to understand the commitments you’re making when raising capital By Kate Legg, CEO, Komerse


nless you’ve won the lottery or have been given a large inheritance, buying a franchise will almost certainly involve securing bank funding. This comes with all manner of legal obligations and minimising the risks you take on requires some awareness of what the bank expects in return. As a general rule, banks like lending to potential franchisees because the risk of the business failing – and therefore the risk of the bank not getting repaid – is lower than for an independent startup. Having said this, the success of any franchise is not guaranteed and banks won’t hand out wads of cash without asking for some security.

Personal guarantee Typically, the bank will ask for a personal guarantee from the key people in the business. This will always be in the bank’s standard form with no room for negotiation or amendment of the terms.

elitefranchise | December 2016

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Bank lending

The success of any franchise is not guaranteed and banks won’t hand out wads of cash without asking for some security The first thing to look out for is whether the guarantee is limited in amount or unlimited. Even if it is limited to a specified amount, the costs and expenses that the bank can charge in relation to enforcement will be unlimited. For instance, this means that if the guarantee is limited to £10,000 the actual amount that you‘re potentially on the hook for will be £10,000 plus costs and interest. The guarantee will be a continuing security. This means that, once given, it will remain in place indefinitely until the bank releases it. As soon as the loan has been repaid – or if you’re no longer involved in the business – make sure you contact the bank and get written confirmation that the guarantee has been released. If there’s more than one person giving the guarantee, liability will be joint and several. This means that the bank can choose to sue one, a few or all of the guarantors. The bank doesn’t have to sue each person for an equal share of the amount due. Some guarantees contain a right of set-off that allows the bank to set-off money you owe against anything of yours that the bank holds. In short, this means that if you have cash in a personal account with the bank and you owe money under the personal guarantee, then the bank could take your cash to pay off the money you owe. In reality, the only time the bank is likely to use the personal guarantee is if there’s no money in the business. However, it’s important to note that the bank doesn’t have to bring a claim against the company before claiming against you personally. Moreover, ignorance is no defence. If you don’t understand any clauses in the guarantee, ask your solicitor to explain it.

Taking charge The personal guarantee gives the bank the right to sue the individual guarantor for money owed by the company. However, this is of little value if the person giving the guarantee has no assets with which to repay the bank. As a result, personal guarantees will often be supported by a charge over the guarantor’s home. In a worst-case scenario, if the company can’t pay and the individual guarantor has no other assets, then the bank could enforce the charge over their home to recover the money due. If the family home is jointly owned by a married couple but the guarantee is only being given to one spouse then the charge will only relate to their share of the house. If there’s already a mortgage on the house, then the bank’s charge will be second in priority behind the existing mortgage. This would mean the bank security is effectively the share of the equity that spouse has built in the property. Bet your assets The bank may also take a charge over the company’s assets. This is called a debenture or charge. If a personal guarantee is being given, then it’s worth making sure that the bank also takes a debenture or charge over the company’s assets. This is because if things go wrong, the debenture moves the bank up the priority list in terms of who gets paid first. As a result, this makes it more likely that the bank will be paid by the company and so less likely that it will have to enforce the personal guarantee. Tips for a successful application To finish, here are my top tips to make sure your application for funding goes through smoothly:

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If the bank has a franchise team, use them. Franchising is a niche area and it will be helpful to apply to people who understand the industry. Make sure you thoroughly understand the business plan you are presenting at the application. Don’t rely on any plans or projections given by the franchisor. Instead, do your homework and verify your own figures.


Don’t be disheartened if the bank turns you down. The franchise teams at the bank work closely with franchise networks and may have access to information that you don’t have. If the bank turns you down, try to find out why.


Allow plenty of time. The process of applying for funding, having the application approved, getting the documents issued and completed and funding being made available always takes longer than you think. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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30/11/2016 17:12


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Operate your very own branch of The Bank of Spare Capacity. Now is your chance to be part of the CURRENCY REVOLUTION with the rise of alternative currencies gathering pace along with the acceptance of new methods to fund business growth. BBX has been a leader in the marketplace since inception in 1993 and is proud to have a strong franchising pedigree allowing it to expand into 12 countries covering 4 continents. Our franchisees invariably have a background in sales management and are good motivators and communicators. Depending on the individual strengths a franchisee will chose to build either a Regional or District franchise, details below, which both enjoy the following key benefits: • Worldwide brand and proven business model. • A product at the forefront of the currency revolution currently taking place. • Earnings 24/7 due to international reach and automated systems. • High profitability and re-sale values.

Regional Franchise As one of 14 regional franchisees you would be responsible for client acquisition within a defined territory and developing a sales team of up-to 15 individuals to recruit 30 new clients for each of the 5 district offices in your territory. You would also be responsible for running a regional sales office and forging links with the business heads in the area.

District Franchise A district franchisee is responsible for the ongoing client management of the accounts within a defined area involving:

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Why buy a sandwich franchise? • The British ‘on the go’ sandwich market is currently valued at £3 billion • 1.8 billion sandwiches are bought in the UK every year • A healthier fast food option

Visit to find out about buying a sandwich franchise – and more!


Franchisee: Greater Manchester

A resale opportunity has arisen in one of our franchises based in the Greater Manchester area.

Investment: TBC

The franchisee operates from a shop front so any purchaser would be walking into a readymade business with a newly refurbished shop complete with furniture, IT and telephone systems along with experienced, well qualified staff.

Location: Greater Manchester

Established: 2006

Turnover: £240,000

This represents an excellent foundation upon which a new franchisee can continue to develop a substantial business which is very well known in the local area. The business has enjoyed regular growth with the majority of new clients coming from recommendations, walk in business and inbound leads generated from the support centre. The business has gross recurring fees of £300,000 and the franchisee is now looking to realise the asset built. For a franchise re-sale you only pay us a half franchise and training fee as we recognise that you will also be investing in purchasing the business. For further information please call us today on 0800 0188 297 or visit us at


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Franchise RESALES

Franchisee: Gloucestershire

A resale opportunity has arisen in one of our Franchises based in the Gloucestershire area.

Investment: c£650,000

The franchisee started in 2006 and operates from two prominent shop front locations within their designated territory.

Location: Gloucestershire Established: 2006

Turnover: c£440,000

The Franchisee’s business services around circa 550 clients and enjoys gross annual recurring fees of circa £435,000. With established shops complete with furniture, IT and telephone systems any purchaser would be walking into a ready-made business. This represents an excellent foundation upon which a new franchisee can further develop an already substantial business. The business has enjoyed regular growth with the majority of new clients coming from recommendations, walk-in business and inbound leads generated from the support centre. For a franchise re-sale you only pay us a half franchise and training fee as we recognise that you will also be investing in purchasing the business. For further information please call us today on 0800 0188 297 or visit us at


Exhibit at Europe’s Fastest Growing

Franchise Exhibitions... ...and put your brand in front of thousands of qualified investors the

New Start


17th & 18th February 2017

Justin Livingston CFE

9th & 10th September 2016

10th & 11th November 2016

James Dixon Box Events Manager

Richard Holden, Head of Franchising

Had a great show in London! Talked to great potential clients about expanding Coyote Ugly in India, UK, Ireland, Italy, Slovakia, and more!


The best exhibition I’ve attended in the past five years. Clearly a lot of effort has gone in to promoting the show and attracting quality visitors which has convinced me that Excel is the place to be for exhibitors wanting high quality enquiries




We attend this show every year and it just gets better and better. The organisation was seamless and the we will definitely be back next year.


Secure your stand today!



0330 1222 049 @FranchiseShowUK


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A fantastically rewarding and fulfilling business to be in... “I had a tough 2 years building this business and learning my new profession, but now I’m eclipsing my corporate earnings, in a 2 1/2 day week, so I get all the time I want with my wife & kids. I admire the calibre of people I get to work with & learn from & I’ve got the satisfaction of knowing that my clients are the biggest winners.” Lucas Vigilante, ActionCOACH Franchise Partner

• Winner 2014 Best UK Franchise Award sponsored by RBS • Guaranteed £10k per month by month 7 for the best applicants (Ask us about Ts & Cs) • 1st to achieve 5 Star Franchisee Satisfaction Award • Personal investment can be as low as £10k • You get to reap the rewards; the more you put In, the more you get out • Best UK Business Opportunity according to Compare The Financial Markets

Watch the opportunity video at:

Contact us: | Call: 01284 701 648 | Email: |



The innovative HomeXperts franchise model enables you to start your own estate and letting agency working from home or a small serviced office. You will be trained to industry standards, whilst receiving continuous, comprehensive support and receive access to the awardwinning HomeXperts Franchisee Hub. By working hard and following the proven franchise model, you could secure your financial future by earning more than £25,000 in invoiced commissions in a month.

• Industry leading training package • iPad, Wide-angle lens camera, Digital measurer • 24/7 access to the award winning HomeXperts Hub • Access to all of the major UK property portals • Local website and a national branch page • Full back office support

Phone: 01905 678853 | Email: |


The Interface Financial Group

IFG 50/50 is an affordable home-based franchise that provides short-term working capital to businesses by purchasing current, quality invoices at a discount. In IFG 50/50, all transactions are handled by both the franchisor and the franchisee. Both handle due diligence and funding. The franchisor, however, handles 90% of the paperwork, leaving franchisees free to handle the ‘people’ part of the franchise.

• Above-average ROI • Low overhead - home-based • Virtually paperless • All transactions worked together • Non-territorial & Portable

Phone 0845 834 0332 | Email: |


TaxAssist Accountants

TaxAssist Accountants is the UK’s largest network of accountants servicing the needs of small businesses and the self-employed. TaxAssist takes on both accountants and business/finance professionals as franchisees can employ accountants while they concentrate on building their business. With an established brand and known for breaking with tradition in an industry that has not experienced this before, TaxAssist Accountants stand out from the crowd operating from highly visible and welcoming shop front premises.

• 5 star franchisee satisfaction award for three years running • Awards from franchise and accountancy arenas • Accountancy fee banks are a saleable asset • In demand services • 1st class support and training

Contact Jody Macmillan | Call: 0800 0188297 | Email: |


sponsored by THE ZIPYARD 76


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Franchise Sales is the leading internet resource for franchising. Online since 2001, we have extensive experience helping prospective franchisees find and buy the right franchise and franchisors find and recruit the right people for their business. We aim to help you become an owner of your dream business, by making the process quick, simple and easy. Our clients are successful, wealthy and happy with their franchise business.

• High quality leads • High conversion rate • Number one in Google and other search engines • Global reach



Have you ever considered what a life-changing opportunity a McDonald’s franchise could offer? Being a McDonald’s franchisee means owning your own business – working for yourself, but not by yourself. It’s about setting your own goals, managing your own restaurants and reaping your own rewards. McDonald’s franchisees are hands-on, business-savvy and ambitious people who are ready to make a long term commitment to a business.

“I didn’t know anything about the food industry, so coming in and getting all that training gives you a lot of confidence and comfort.” Jane Blackwell - McDonald’s franchisee, Banbury



Over 60% of businesses have the ability to service more customers without increasing their fixed costs – this is called their SPARE CAPACITY. If their spare capacity is not used its value will be lost forever which costs UK businesses hundreds of billions in lost revenue annually. BBX is the largest Global Cashless Trade Exchange offering businesses a facility to turn their spare capacity into additional revenue without discounting. Building on 22 years of franchising we have opportunities in the UK offering:

• Multiple income streams – earning 24/7 • Dedicated territories • Renewable income leading to exponential profit growth • Immediate cash flow • Global market leaders

Contact Matthew Harding | Call: 0333 4002014 | email: |

Zip Yard

Are you ambitious to run your own business? Customer driven and well organised? Can you follow a proven business system? All Zip Yard franchises are finished to a distinctive specification and you are presented with a fully operational and fully supported business with trained staff and comprehensive brand marketing from day one.


• Marketing and promotion tools • Group purchasing power • Internet and web support • Ongoing training programmes • Continued concept and product development • Day to day troubleshooting

Contact phone 01530 513307 | email: |


sponsored by THE ZIPYARD

THEZIPYARD.COM December 2016 | elitefranchise

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02/12/2016 15:53

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To find out 100% of the information about the award-winning HomeXperts model, book your discovery meeting by emailing

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A discovery meeting will explain the innovative franchise model in full, helping you to decide if HomeXperts is right for you. Discovery meetings are held around the country on a weekly basis, including London, Manchester and Worcester.

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If you have any initial questions, call the HomeXperts Franchise Recruitment Team on 01905 678853.

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Phone: 01905 678853 Email:

Come and talk talk to to us us at at our our Insight Day in Elstree Warwick 22nd July 2016 2nd December 2016 6th January 2016

Come and talk talk to to us us at at our our Insight Day in Elstree 11 045116-250x148-CityAM.indd Elstree 045116-250x148-CityAM.indd 22nd July 2016



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Find out about our seminars and book your FREE place at

Ahead for Business Franchise Seminars


Ahead for Business What is franchising? How does it work? Can I be successful? All of these questions and more are answered at the NatWest Franchise Seminars. We will provide advice and guidance to help you identify and choose the right franchise, so that you can enjoy the rewards and freedom of being your own boss. You will be guided through our ‘Steps to Success’, an overview of the franchise industry, given financial advice and an insight into the operational and legal considerations of investing in a franchise. The seminars are held regularly in Manchester, Birmingham and London.

02071 833 657


78 I RBS001

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Interested Investors

IFG operates regular Franchise Office Discovery Days. For those interested in a self-employed career that involves a world connected to finance and who have a business curious analytical mind, we hope they will enjoy spending some time investigating this fascinating franchise opportunity. There with you are co-attendees researching IFG; different ages, career backgrounds and all adds to a constructive, productive day. Right from the start, the heart of IFG has been to place its franchisees in a serious leadership position. Only with a network of skilled, committed and industrious franchisees can we correctly find, service and underwrite our small business clients who need prompt payment of their bills. We are proud of providing an ethical and sustainable source of fast finance to businesses. We’d be delighted if you wish to join us at one of our Discovery days to learn more.

One of our franchise representatives will contact you shortly to introduce themselves and the opportunity. Provided you are happy we will send you some more detailed information for you to digest. We then arrange a Q&A over the phone and if all your questions are answered satisfactory we will then invite you into the office to meet the developers and give you a full presentation covering best, conservative and worst case scenarios. From there we cover the contract and provided you are happy we welcome you on-board. To find out more about this unique franchise opportunity, please contact us via any of the below. 0207 608 5591

Phone 0845 834 0332 Email: INTE002


70643_The_ZipYard_Advert_85-125_Layout 1 21/11/2016 17:00 Page 1

Become a ZipYard Franchisee

Butcher, baker and cabinet maker... our franchisees come from all works of life! But they all had one thing in common. They all wanted to take control of their own destiny and become their own boss. Why did they choose The ZipYard? We are the most successful garment alteration business in the UK. They were presented with a fully operational business from day one. It’s a recession resistant high street franchise. “The Altrincham ZipYard has exceeded all of our expectations. We’ve now opened a second centre in Wilmslow.” Richard McConnell (former Driving Instructor)

Call us to learn about our discovery days


to speak to a member of our team

The ZipYard Unit 2, Cartwright Way, Forest Business Park, Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, LE67 1UE t 01530 513304


December 2016 | elitefranchise

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GET INSPIRED BY SOME OF THE UK’S MOST SUCCESSFUL FRANCHISORS Elite Franchise is the UK’s fastest-growing title for franchisees, start-ups and growing franchise businesses in the UK. A high-quality magazine, it’s packed with engaging content including interviews with the hottest franchises around, hints and tips to help aspiring entrepreneurs and columns from those in the know. SAVE £20 on the cover price delivered free to your door. Subscribe to the print edition and enjoy free access to the digital edition every month.

Receive 12 issues of the UK’s best new franchise magazine for entrepreneurs for only £20*

Call us today on:



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November 2016 £4.50

WE MAKE FOOTBALLERS Why Sean Conlon is investing in tomorrow’s footie stars


Can an Emirati franchise change the way Brits see kebabs?


Buying a franchise doesn’t always lead to a healthier work-life balance

October 2016 £4.50


How Amit Kainth created his franchise network almost entirely by accident


Brody Sweeney dishes on venturing into the London food delivery market


September 2016 £4.50

BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO How to avoid heartache when partnerships fall apart


How James Ellender became a real-life Willy Wonka

SHUTTERCRAFT The franchise sheds some light on its successful transformation

August 2016 £4.50


Meet the franchise caring for all creatures great and small


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The mobile coffee shop serving up success on the streets



The estate and lettings franchise shares its approach to property

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Ensuring the world has the right tools for the job

Why you must leave your ego aside when bringing on a franchise consultant


When he stumbled across Muffin Break [XXXX] years ago, Michael Arbuckle knew he’d found something truly remarkable. Since then he’s brought the Australian bakery brand to international markets and helped grow it to 60 stores around the UK


Whether it’s relocating from Sydney to the UK or swimming the Cook Strait, Danny Hanlon doesn’t shrink from a challenge. And fortune favours the brave: since 1998, he’s grown Trend Transformations to a network of over 200 locations around the globe

KEEPING BUSY To say Lisa Curteis is a hard worker is an understatement. In the early years of Rosemary Bookkeeping, its director was scarcely able to switch off – even when she went into hospital to give birth to her son. But the hard work has definitely paid off, seeing her head up an award-winning franchise network


For former professional rugby player Mark Llewellyn, tackling challenges head on is second nature. Thanks to this, his vehicle repair franchise Revive! UK is now entering the fast lane and is set to turn over £8.5m this year


When Ian Christelow first came across ActionCOACH, he knew it was something he wanted to be part of. From one area development license in East Anglia, he has since grown the franchise into a network of over 150 coaches that helps companies throughout the UK

*Limited to new subscribers at UK addresses only. Please allow 28 days for delivery. Overseas mail: Europe £60; rest of world £95 Offer closes 31.12.16

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Franchise Diaries Jane Maudsley, founder & managing director, Little Voices

Why franchisors should face their fears, roll up their sleeves and enter the running for industry awards

Putting yourself

out there I

t’s often much easier to get someone else to shout about your successes than doing it yourself; bragging is not an attractive quality. But as a business owner, I’ve discovered just how important it is to overcome that hesitation and build your reputation. One of the best ways of doing this is by entering – and hopefully winning – awards. But often just taking part

of a competition gets you in front of interested people and highlights your brand to a wider audience. At the HSBC Women in Business Awards 2016, I was lucky enough to have been nominated and then shortlisted in two categories. The ceremony itself was very impressive and sometimes it’s just nice to have a treat, glam up and get out of the

office. The compound effect of an awards nomination is fantastic and it does wonders for your self-confidence and the morale of those around you. Once your nomination is in, you often have to wait a long time to hear if you’ve made the shortlist and then there’s the build-up to the ceremony, during which time you can make the most of the marketing opportunities. December 2016 | elitefranchise

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Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft, once said that if he had to spend his last marketing dollar on anything in business it would be PR – and he was so right. Positive press coverage is very valuable and being involved in awards ceremonies creates the best PR stories, especially if you’re able to share the story surrounding your entry with journalists. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn can play a crucial role in building anticipation and sharing any press coverage you earn. Being associated with a prestigious awards ceremony raises the profile of your franchise network among customers, suppliers and key contacts in the industry, which everyone in the network will benefit from. Your brand will also reap rewards from the endorsement and if you publicise your nomination on all your marketing collateral, that shine can last throughout the year. That being said, the work involved in entering awards can’t be underestimated. Local awards need to be sought out by franchisees and as a franchisor you need to be looking at the national awards. You should also make sure you consider and nominate franchisees, administration staff, apprentices or other talent from across your network when you’re scouring the categories. And while it helps to enter a large number of awards, selecting niche awards or categories can pay off too. We carefully select which awards to enter and make sure they’re relevant to our target market.


You won’t win every award and that’s OK. Being close to the top is often just fine Often a franchisee or franchisor may be put off entering awards because they’re too busy or they lack confidence. But you have to put yourself out there and shout from the rooftops. Believe me, winning an award is a far more professional way to market your products and services than telling people how good you are yourself. You need to push yourself out of your comfort zone and just make the time. It certainly gets addictive and competitive, which I’m sure most people in business will understand. Don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t pay off at once. It’s the small, consistent steps that lead to success. I remember waking up on January 1 2015 and thinking ‘this is the year that Little Voices is going to win an award’. It was my New Year’s resolution and it came true when parents voted us the UK’s Best School-Age Music Activity 2015 in the Kallikids Best Awards. You won’t win every award and that’s OK. Being close to the top will often do just fine. Although I wasn’t named HSBC’s Woman Franchisor of the Year in May this year, the experience of being in the top five was amazing and I will always have fantastic memories of the pre-ceremony reception in London at the Gherkin. The people you’ll meet at these events and the relationships you can build with fellow franchise owners, franchisees and business people in general is worth every minute of the effort of entering the awards.

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Not just a pipe dream! Make you dream a reality and become your own boss today with:

We are looking to expand nationwide and we are seeking highly motivated individuals or couples who are enthusiastic, good communicators and have a desire to succeed. By choosing Clear Brew Ltd, you can become your own boss, running a highly successful franchise with your own huge protected territory, comprehensive training package, full equipment pack and full ongoing support.

Complete Franchise Package £12,500 +vat • Fantastic business opportunity

• Comprehensive franchise package • Huge protected territory • High profit margins

• Massive growth potential • Excellent daily cash flow • Grow at your own pace • Full training provided

• Full on-going support • Vital repeat service

For more information email: call: 0800 7810 577 CLEA001 Untitled-3 Clear Brew 1FP Advert Apr15.indd 1

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Elite Franchise Magazine Dec 2016  

HOME RUN: Dabbling in the property market led Sussanne Chambers to found homebased estate and lettings franchise HomeXperts. Given it’s now...

Elite Franchise Magazine Dec 2016  

HOME RUN: Dabbling in the property market led Sussanne Chambers to found homebased estate and lettings franchise HomeXperts. Given it’s now...