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Franchise Opportunities

 

Franchising offers opportunities in a wide range of industries. From home-based businesses to high street retail units, mobile businesses to office based operations, if you are looking for a franchise, select the category below that interests you and start to find out how you can become your own boss.

By looking at the range of UK franchise opportunities for sale it could provide you with an envied insight into a world where future success is realistically based on proven systems and a long established history of successful trading.

What is a franchise?

Franchising is often referred to as ‘a business in a box’. The box contains all the elements necessary for any new franchisee, with little or no previous business experience, to kick-start a new business opportunity with dramatically better chances of success than could ever be expected of a stand-alone start-up.

A franchise (or business format franchise) is a business model which has been created and developed to be profitable - and to be replicable. Before recruiting franchisees, the franchisor will have tried-and-tested the franchise over a period of years, adapted and changed the business to meet different trading conditions and – critically – developed a business model which can be transferred to another geographical location to assure the same probability of success.

Buying a franchise

The new franchisee buys a license to use the franchisor’s name and/or brand and operates a local franchise as its owner. The franchisor delivers initial and ongoing training together with tried-and-tested management systems and provides a hand-holding partnership where the franchisee is in business for himself – but not by himself. And as the ongoing success of the franchisor’s business is wholly dependent on the success of its individual franchisees, it is in the franchisor’s commercial interest to continuously support, train and motivate its network of franchisees to sustain and build on its business success.

The package

Many new franchisees have little or no previous business experience. The franchisor will therefore offer not only the technical training necessary to operate within a chosen sector, but also provide proven systems covering the critical areas of producing a business plan, getting new customers, invoicing, credit control, cash flow, maintaining proper accounts and general management techniques. Additionally, many franchisors provide specialised equipment and bespoke software as part of a package tailored to individual business sectors.

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How it works

Successful franchising is wholly dependent upon the development of mutual trust between the franchisor and the franchisee who will be responsible for maintaining the franchisor’s business image and reputation in a particular geographical area.
The franchisor provides an operating system – usually detailed in an operations manual – which defines in detail how the new franchisee will be obliged to run the business. The experienced franchisor will have considerable in-depth knowledge of how the business works efficiently and will pass this knowledge on to the franchisee as part of a confidential agreement.

Flexibility

You may want to work from home to minimise the cost of business premises; you may want to work part-time until the business is established; and you may have limited funds to invest. UK franchising offers options in all these areas with franchise opportunities for sale for under £10,000 and a wide range of van-based and home-based franchises to suit individual requirements.

The UK franchise industry is diverse and embraces sectors from Cleaning to Care and Elderly Services, from Homecare to Health and Beauty, and from Property to Petcare. It includes household names such as McDonald’s Restaurants and Pizza Hut, Kumon Educational and Razzamataz Theatre Schools, Bang & Olufsen and Boots Opticians, the AA and the Camping and Caravanning Club.

The UK franchise industry

In the UK there are 897 franchise systems with 36,900 units generating an annual turnover of £12.4 billion. Around 521,0000 people work within the UK franchise industry – it is big business and continues to grow despite the economic gloom.

Financing a franchise

Because the UK franchise industry is long established with a track record of successful new franchise start-ups, the major banks readily recognise the potential of UK franchising and maintain specialist franchise services to provide financial support and advice to prospective new franchisees. And franchisors provide assistance with the development of business plans that banks will demand before discussing start-up loans. Around 60 per cent of all new franchisees borrow to start their businesses. Typically, if you have £30,000 capital to invest, a bank specialising in franchising will lend you a further £70,000 - raising your start-up capital available to £100,000.

Where to start?

For any newcomer to the world of UK franchising, the choices and options available can be bewildering.So where is the best place to start?
Fortunately the industry offers a choice of effective research tools – all of which should have a place in your assessment of the franchise opportunities available and, more relevantly, the opportunities that meet your individual requirements.
Magazines and websites dedicated to franchising will provide a broad brush picture of the industry and the wide range of UK franchises for sale. While the amount of money you have to invest will be a major factor in your search, the general consensus of opinion also suggests that you should be looking for a franchise sector that you feel comfortable with – an area you have a special interest in or something you have always wanted to do.

Exhibitions

Franchise exhibitions take place throughout the year and are a golden opportunity to research the UK franchise market. Most franchisors will have existing franchisees available on their exhibition stands, ready to answer the multitude of questions prospective new franchisees will be ready to pose.
Exhibitions also offer free franchise specific seminars – invaluable to industry newcomers. These offer advice from the bfa (British Franchise Association) and members of the legal and finance professions and include subject areas such as where to start, who to talk to and where to find advice.
The best advice for anyone using a franchise exhibition to look at UK franchise opportunities for the first time is to get full information on the exhibition you plan to attend beforehand and plan the day to gain maximum advantage from the wealth of information on offer.

Open days

When you have finally identified your short list of franchises for further investigation, Open Days are the ideal way of obtaining in-depth information on a one-to-one basis. Most franchisors offer this facility on a pre-booked basis, allowing prospective franchisees to visit the head office or a franchise unit to see the franchise in operation, talk to franchisees and get answers to all those still lingering questions.

Lastly, are you cut out for franchising?

As the new franchisee will be the public face of the franchise in a new location, franchisors will be highly selective when allocating new franchise territories and make every effort to ensure that both parties will work together for their mutual benefit and the long term development of the franchise business. It should be a simple process to find out what each individual franchisor is looking for in a new franchisee – it is then up to you to decide if you and the franchisor are really made for each other.

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