global franchise newsletter sign up graphic

Stay in the know and receive the latest international franchising news, insight and investment opportunities

close catfish

A franchise market not just surviving, but thriving

A franchise market not just surviving, but thriving

A recap of the U.K.’s positive market trends and franchise business growth, despite challenging circumstances

Keep up to date with the latest Global Franchise News sent straight to your inbox. Sign up here.

Further to Boris Johnson’s announcement on June 14, that full restriction easing has been postponed until July 19, we at the bfa understand how frustrating this is for those amongst our membership and the wider franchising community.

For many, this spells a (hopefully) final painful twist of the knife as they look to bring their businesses into the new normal. As much as we all acknowledge that many things will never go back to exactly how they were before, the need to bring our systems back online and revive the economy has never been more acutely felt by all of us.

With the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) anticipating the cost of the pandemic to the U.K. economy running up to £700bn, the impact is being felt across the board. Current unemployment rates are at around 4.8 per cent, meaning around one in 20 people who want a job can’t find one.

Despite that, however, there have been sectors and businesses that have not only weathered the storm of the pandemic but actively thrived during it. The obvious ones being online meeting platforms – such as Zoom and GoToMeeting among others – as well as pharmaceuticals, cleaning/ personal hygiene products, and those providing products and tools for the gardening and DIY industries.

Specifically, within the franchise sector, we have seen many success stories during the last 18 months or so. Join us in looking at some of those who have excelled in these challenging times.

“Within the franchise sector, we have seen many success stories in the last 18 months or so”

Food and beverage

Among our members who have been doing particularly well are those who have pivoted from providing a service at premises or venue to either providing it online or via delivery. And among those, the food and beverage sector has shown an incredible ability to adapt.

McDonald’s has seen a huge uptake of its McDelivery Service, Domino’s Pizza now boasts over 1,100 U.K. branches – with a further 200 on the way – and faces the challenge of recruiting the necessary staff to meet this surge in demand. Papa John’s, too, continues to grow throughout the U.K., now with more than 450 outlets and plans to open multiple more outlets over the next couple of months too. As well as launching in high street locations, the brand is working on initiatives to partner with leisure venues, sports stadiums, and holiday parks.

However, it isn’t just the big names that are doing well. Since opening its first restaurant in 2010, Camile Thai has expanded to 40 locations in the United Kingdom and Ireland and has quickly gained popularity as a tech-savvy leader in the food delivery space.

The company was an early adopter of the hot-food-at-home delivery model and currently serves over 10,000 healthy meals every day to consumers across its network of franchised and company-owned locations.

Camile Thai has also just agreed a partnership with Kitchen United which will see the brand poised to break into the United States, as it continues to grow throughout 2021 with new locations opening in Chicago River North, Pasadena, and Austin.

Care

Set against the backdrop of an aging population and a global pandemic, the care sector continues to show massive growth, with almost all of our members in the domiciliary care sector reporting growth and strong profits.

Caremark, one of our members in this sector, stated: “The demand for care at home is an option more and more in demand, with a recent National YouGov survey showing 92 per cent of people over 50 questioned said they would prefer to be cared for at home than in a residential home.”

Outsourced services

As more and more businesses move to remote working, outsourced service providers have seen a huge uptake in their services.

One of our members, Get Ahead VA, has just recently grown into double figures, welcoming its tenth franchisee to the network. Get Ahead VA offers nationwide marketing and business support services. From bookkeeping to blogging, database management to design and telephone answering to Twitter, its team of virtual business experts delivers support on an hourly, project, or ongoing basis. It stands to reason that those services would be far more popular as people move away from fixed premises.

“Set against the backdrop of an ageing population and a global pandemic, the care sector continues to show massive growth”

Remote and flexible working solutions

Speaking of premises, one sector that has seen a large growth during the coronavirus is flexible workspaces. IWG plc, formerly Regus, provides serviced offices under several brand names, including Regus. It has seen a massive lift in demand, and in fact, this article is being written from inside an IWG space.

Julian Chambers, head of franchise at IWG – UK & Ireland, says: “The past year has seen the entire world take on the largest flexible working experiment and now, people want to hold on to the best parts of working close to home. Gone are the days when professionals wouldn’t bat an eyelid at a two-hour commute during rush hour. What we are seeing is a permanent shift to how and where we work.

“The demand for flexible workspaces shows no signs of slowing, not just in London but across the U.K. There’s a huge opportunity for franchise investors to tap into this and be a part of the remote working revolution.”

E-learning

With schools a hotly debated topic, e-learning services have been in increased demand during the course of the pandemic and show no signs of slowing down as we move closer to all restrictions being removed. One example is bfa member Mathnasium, which is celebrating a doubling of turnover despite the worst trading year in living memory.

Master franchisee John Preston attributes the network’s resilience and success to being able to switch overnight to an online tuition portal. An instant success, Mathnasium’s bespoke online learning system allowed the franchisees and the network to remain in business, offering live face-to-face Maths tuition and support to students wherever they were. “In fact, our year-on-year revenue more than doubled – up by 109 per cent for the period March 2020 to February 2021.”

So, there is optimism in our membership, and in the wider business community. For some, there has been no option to pivot in this way, but for those who have had the ability and the willingness to adapt, the turbulence of this period has shown a new way to do business, and I am sure that some of that will continue long into the future.

The author

Terence Corness is head of brand and innovation at the bfa. With a background in event and video production, as well as creative content design, Terence worked with the bfa for many years before joining in his current capacity. thebfa.org

you may be interested in

franchise directory

  • TaxAssist Accountants

    Business & Professional Services, Financial Services, <100K, Featured

  • Cafe2U

    Food & Catering, Coffee, Take-away, <100K, Featured

  • 800 Pizza

    Food & Catering, Fastfood, Pizza, Take-away, Featured

view more
Connect with Linkedin Logo
Global White Logo Click Here
Close button

WHAT DO WE USE YOUR INFORMATION FOR?

Any of the information we collect from you may be used in one of the following ways: To personalize your experience (your information helps us to better respond to your individual needs) To improve our website (we continually strive to improve our website offerings based on the information and feedback we receive from you) To improve customer service (your information helps us to more effectively respond to your customer service requests and support needs) To process transactions your information, whether public or private, will not be sold, exchanged, transferred, or given to any other company for any reason whatsoever, without your consent, other than for the express purpose of delivering the purchased product or service requested. To administer a contest, promotion, survey or other site feature To send periodic emails The email address you provide for order processing, will only be used to send you information and updates pertaining to your order. Note: If at any time you would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, we include detailed unsubscribe instructions at the bottom of each email.

HOW DO WE PROTECT YOUR INFORMATION?

We implement a variety of security measures to maintain the safety of your personal information when you place an order or enter, submit, or access your personal information We offer the use of a secure server. All supplied sensitive/credit information is transmitted via Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology and then encrypted into our Payment gateway providers database only to be accessible by those authorized with special access rights to such systems, and are required to keep the information confidential. After a transaction, your private information (credit cards, social security numbers, financials, etc.) will not be stored on our servers.

DO WE USE COOKIES?

Yes (Cookies are small files that a site or its service provider transfers to your computers hard drive through your Web browser (if you allow) that enables the sites or service providers systems to recognize your browser and capture and remember certain information. We use cookies to help us remember and process the items in your shopping cart, understand and save your preferences for future visits, keep track of advertisements and compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interaction so that we can offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We may contract with third-party service providers to assist us in better understanding our site visitors. These service providers are not permitted to use the information collected on our behalf except to help us conduct and improve our business.

DO WE DISCLOSE ANY INFORMATION TO OUTSIDE PARTIES?

We do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your personally identifiable information. This does not include trusted third parties who assist us in operating our website, conducting our business, or servicing you, so long as those parties agree to keep this information confidential. We may also release your information when we believe release is appropriate to comply with the law, enforce our site policies, or protect ours or others rights, property, or safety. However, non-personally identifiable visitor information may be provided to other parties for marketing, advertising, or other uses.

THIRD PARTY LINKS

Occasionally, at our discretion, we may include or offer third party products or services on our website. These third party sites have separate and independent privacy policies. We therefore have no responsibility or liability for the content and activities of these linked sites. Nonetheless, we seek to protect the integrity of our site and welcome any feedback about these sites.

CHILDRENS ONLINE PRIVACY PROTECTION ACT COMPLIANCE

We are in compliance with the requirements of COPPA (Childrens Online Privacy Protection Act), we do not collect any information from anyone under 13 years of age. Our website, products and services are all directed to people who are at least 13 years old or older.

ONLINE PRIVACY POLICY ONLY

This online privacy policy applies only to information collected through our website and not to information collected offline.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Please also visit our Terms and Conditions section establishing the use, disclaimers, and limitations of liability governing the use of our website at globalfranchisemagazine.com/terms-conditions

YOUR CONSENT

By using our site, you consent to our online privacy policy.

CHANGES TO OUR PRIVACY POLICY

If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post those changes on this page

CONTACTING US

If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy you may contact us using the information below. All correspondence relating to the Website should be sent to: Global Franchise 21/23 Phoenix Court Hawkins Road Colchester Essex CO2 8JY Email: subscriptions@aceville.co.uk