Retail Jul, 20 2012

Unwrap the wrapped profits

Get the party started in your career with an exciting franchise opportunity from the personalised gift retail industry. With low investment and high returns, this business is sure to be beneficial for both the business owner and the channel partner.

By Mehak Rampal
Feature Writer
Unwrap the wrapped profits

What is common between a birthday, anniversary, wedding, baby shower, Diwali, Christmas, farewell or any celebratory occasion?  They all entitle gifts. India loves to celebrate and giving and sharing is an integral part of the Indian society. Gone are the days when gift shops were a popular haunt to select a gift for a loved one. We are a busy generation and customers today want unique and quality products with the convenience of shopping online.

In the offering

Customising gift products is the new norm and there are several websites and virtual brands offering variety of products for personalisation. To make their products and services available across the nation and even in overseas markets business owners have opted for franchise route, thus offering lucrative business opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs. Considering the increasing craze for online retailing the franchisors have also started selling online. Now, the products can be ordered for individuals and in bulk for corporate gifting purposes. Photo-frames, wall clocks, mouse-pads, t-shirts, bags, coasters, diaries, key-chains etc are available in plenty on sites like ocpindia (sparket) and speciallymade.

Brands selling customised gifts online and offline
The prominent brands falling under the category of online and offline franchise category are:

Ferns N Petals: Pioneering the concept of flower retail franchising is Ferns N Petals. The brand has been consistently bringing in innovations to make more authentic, personalised and interesting flower gifting options. Ferns N Petals plans to add another 50 franchise outlets by the end of 2012. Its online market has been consistently growing by over 60 per cent annually, earning orders worth Rs 15 crore.

Florista: Another key player in the flower gifting field is Florista. They believe a business such as theirs is successful due to good store operations and franchise owners are trained in handling software, team management is taken care of and ample support is given as far as advertising and marketing is concerned. Currently, they have over 30 stores  across the nation and hope to branch out to 300 franchised outlets in the next 3-5 years.

Leonidas: Providing sweet treats by ways of customised chocolate, great potential lies here as the market for chocolate is still in its nascent stages. An initial investment of Rs 20-50 lakh is needed for a Leonidas franchise. They have plans of expanding over New Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Uttaranchal, Uttar Pardesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Goa, Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, West Bengal, Sikkim, Kerala, Karnataka, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pardesh, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Andaman and Nicobar, Pondicherry, Chandigarh, Lakshadweep and Daman & Diu.

Archies: Archies Limited specialized in greeting card production and is a popular option for interested franchise applicants as greetings and gifts are still very popular especially at events and special occasions. Archie’s is now available as an online retailer and has expanded its product line of gift items. They also customise an array of products which has in-turn increased their success manifold. Archies has over 2000 outlets in the country and has stores internationally as well.

Presto: Presto Wonders was started in recent years and offers more than 600 unique gifts which can be personalised with choicest design for Individuals and corporate gifting needs. Presto has 76 stores and is looking for both store and online franchising. Online franchising would require a small working space or one could also operate from home.

Business Model

When Archies wanted to expand the capital was limited, so franchising came out to be the best option available. The franchisees made the investment for shops in prime locations; Archies provided the product mix and the brand name. This was a huge success so and when Archies marked their presence online, several dealers provided inventory for gift items and today it is possible to order a personalised Archies product from anywhere in the world.

The business model of such companies starts with minimal expenses to ensure maximum earning potential. It also allows franchisees to start from their home. Franchisees can seriously consider moving out of home after some time as expenses can be increased and they get more confident of regular earnings.

Presto Wonders was started in recent years and offers more than 600 unique gifts which can be personalised with choicest design for Individuals and corporate gifting needs. In this unique business model, the company does not share any revenue with franchisee. The entire revenue and profit go into franchisee's account. Presto only charges a franchise fee for the supports it provides to the franchisee. One can enjoy very high rate of return on investment and all round coverage of the market through retail, institutional and network sales. What you end up with is years of expertise rolled out in few days and a profitable, recession free, competition free business to reap benefits from.

Eligible aspirants

Acceptance into a franchise means acceptance into the company’s family and therefore the development of the company. The franchisee is interested in all of what the franchise owners have to say or suggest as it is important that in this vast changing world that the company needs to be versatile and adapt to the trends. It also helps if one has some basic managerial skills or experience in business management though this is not necessarily a prerequisite it is always an advantage to have prior knowledge.

Pawan Gadia, CEO, FnP says: “To set-up a franchise of FnP previous experience is not necessary. Franchisors have to be young, enthusiastic and intellectual minds that can actually understand and follow the protocol of operations and obviously who can further drive the work force to understand and materialise the same.”

Similarly, Vrinda Rambhia, Director, Premium Pralines Pvt. Ltd says: “We believe in people with passion for their work, ambitious and who have a long-term vision.” Her company, Leonidas India is looking at a mix of franchised outlets as well as company-owned in metros and tier-II cities.

With so many great franchise opportunities available in gifting industry, your due diligence and understanding of how to best leverage your personal assets of time and talents, along with your financial assets, you will be able to find a franchise that meets your ROI requirements in a relatively short period of time.

Related: Bagging it all profits and success!

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