What do these Businesses have in common?

  • Bluebird Café
  • Toni & Guy Hairdressers
  • Riverford Organic Foods

Yes they are established and recognised brands in the UK, but they are also businesses that have been really successfully franchised. Franchising is not just for those entrepreneurs wanting to create a chain of fast food outlets. Franchising can and is being applied to all kinds of businesses.

If you have a unique product or service and/or operate in a rapidly growing market and looking to grow your business, Franchising is a good way to recruit ‘likeminded’ people with ambition who are prepared to invest their time, money and energy as well as share in the success.

Alternatively if you want to start your own business but are worried by the high failure of start-up, then the lower risks offered by buying into an established brand and system with head office support and training may well be attractive to you. About 91% of Franchised businesses report making a profit within 12 months of start-up.

As ever doing your homework properly is imperative! A good place to start for information is the British Franchise Association. Their website is packed full of useful information. They also run inexpensive seminars at which you can find out more about being a Franchisor or Franchisee. Having access to experts can be invaluable and helps you avoid expensive mistakes and provide a good insight in what to look for in a franchising opportunity if you are thinking of investing in one.

The BFA also run a number of exhibitions throughout the year with the next being the British & International Franchise exhibition at Olympia London on 15th and 16th March.

One of the best recent examples of a successful franchise I have seen is Bluebird Café based in Petersfield. They have been in business for 7 years providing domiciliary care in the community to the elderly. They have expanded their business to 150 offices in the UK with a distinct service and leading the market. No doubt with people living longer and the high cost of residential care for the elderly there is still considerable growth potential. From such modest beginnings in Petersfield with their first franchise being set up in Fareham, they have now created a multi-million pound business nationally in such a short period of time. This is a massive achievement of which any major company would be proud. It is difficult to see how this success could have been achieved so quickly without using the franchising model.

Kate Bradbury

The Gazelle – taking shape

March 11th, 2013

Wendy Hunt has sent this latest photo of the bronze gazelle sculpture, which is taking shape in the foundry. I am reminded of an “Airfix” kit.

Surely there can’t be long to go!

LEGAL EAGLE: Stacy Quar, a trainee legal executive at business law firm Graeme Quar & Co  in Hampshire, with parachute tandem instructor Chris Davison from GoSkydive.

 A legal eagle with business law firm Graeme Quar & Co has unfolded her wings for charity – literally.

Trainee legal executive Stacey Quar, 29, raised £500 in a tandem parachute jump.

The mother-of-two, from near Petersfield, took part in the white-knuckle adventure to raise money for research and to support people with Crohn’s disease.

Stacey was diagnosed in 2009 with the condition, which causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive system.

She said: “At present there is no cure for the disease, which is very painful. When the disease it at it worse it involves admittance to hospital to be put on intravenous steroids and strong pain medication.

“I was absolutely terrified of falling out of a plane at 10,000 ft but the experience turned out to be fantastic and has helped focus the spotlight on Crohn’s.”

The debilitating condition, named after Dr Burril Crohn, one of the three doctors who first identified the disease in 1932, affects between 30,000 and 60,000 people in theUK– equivalent to 1 in 1,200.

The parachute jump, which involved being strapped into a harness with an instructor, took place at Old Sarum, near Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire.

Stacey, who has two girls aged three and two, called Lily and Summer respectively, has been working for Graeme Quar & Co at the firm’s Fareham office for six years and is a former Portsmouth Grammar School pupil.

To find out more about Crohn’s and Colitis UK, the beneficiary, please click on to

Main symptoms are pain, urgent diarrhoea, severe tiredness and weight loss.