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Besides FOFO, we will also Launch Salons in FOCO Model across the Country: Lakme Salon

While underlining the benefits of Franchise-Owned-Company-Operated (FOCO) model, Pushkaraj Shenai, CEO, Lakme Lever, highlights the 6P support model to enable franchise partners run their salons efficiently

Besides FOFO, we will also Launch Salons in FOCO Model across the Country: Lakme Salon

Please highlight your best practices for franchise management.

Lakme Salon is the pioneer of branded salon services in India and we are amongst the earliest brands to capitalise on the growth of this segment. Today, our country-wide footprint is supported by a network of more than 300 franchise partners.

Our comprehensive 6P support model helps our business partners start and successfully run their salons in the city. The support is provided across:

  • Place - Right from site evaluation, selection and deal closure to salon design and the launch, Lakmé Salon assists with the setup of each salon.
  • People- We help in identifying and hiring the right talent for the salons. All staff is trained in our processes and is provided channels for continuous growth and development by our in-house training and HR teams.
  • Portfolio- Lakme Salons are known for their on-trend services and innovations in hair, makeup and skin. The entire portfolio of services is provided to the consumers through the franchisee salon.Regular Salon staff training is done to ensure that they are equipped to handle all services and are kept up to date with the latest beauty trends
  • Process- each franchisee salon is provided IT and continuous operational support and audits for ease of management and premium service quality.
  • Promotion- Franchisee owners also receive unparalleled marketing and advertising support to make their business a success.
  • Personality- Through this we mentor and support our franchise partners at every step and help them become successful entre-PRO-neurs.

With years of expertise and market research we have now been able to create niche concepts under franchising. Franchisees can choose from the regular, smart and prime models which are customised as per the city and the required area.The portfolio, fit outs and service standards remain the same across the different formats.

How do you ensure all your franchise partners possess similar level of skills?

We constantly innovate with new offerings to bring the best in hair, makeup and skin care to our consumers. To ensure the quality of services remains the same across all salons, we have an in-house training team of 50+ educators who train experts in our process and SOPs. Every salon expert receives continuous training and certification, expert guidance to help them in their growth path, induction, regular refreshers, trainings in new launches & skill upgradations. Additionally, they can access our online training portal to continue their learning.

We also started a coveted talent initiative – Backstage Heroes Programme, which gives the best talent an opportunity to work on the backstage of the prestigious Lakme Fashion Week. Similarly, the operations staff receives training in customer management, new processes and systems to ensure the consumers have a seamless experience at the salon.

What are the models under which Lakme offers franchise opportunities?

Lakme Salon operates in FOFO and FOCO models based on the needs of the market and the business partner.

In the FOFO model, the company grants the right to franchisee to manage the salons operations and functioning as per the guidelines and SOPs set by the brand. The franchisee has a local network and the expertise to deliver the model in the market in the best possible manner thus allowing room for his / her growth. The brand supports the franchisee through products, service trainings, operational support & promotional offers. The franchisee only pays the royalty to Lakme Salon.

We have newly launched the FOCO model in our network. In this, the investor puts in the initial amount to setup the salon and the rest will be handled by the company. Right from doing the interiors, to handling daily operations, providing staff and executing promotions - all will be done by the company. This allows investors to start their journey in the beauty business while relying on the knowledge and expertise of the brand. In this format, a fixed % of the turnover comes to the investor. We are looking to launch more salons in this format across the country.

What are the operational challenges that beauty and wellness segment is facing?

The beauty and wellness industry in India is booming with tremendous potential for growth. In fact, it is said to be growing twice as fast as the markets of the United States and Europe. India is also the second largest consumer market in the world. The compounded annual growth rate of the beauty and wellness business in India has been around 18%.

In fact, consumers are becoming more aspiration driven and are conscious of their looks, appearance and well-being. However, the beauty salon and spa industry like any other service sector faces certain challenges. Some of these challenges that are plaguing growth potential are:

  • Lack of skilled manpower: The beauty industry is led by unorganised players with no formal training or entry barriers. Getting skilled staff is a challenge. At Lakme Salon, we have a comprehensive 15-day induction for all new joinees which covers basics of service-level training. We also rely on our product partners to provide training and knowledge to our team.
  • Increased operational costs: Rising costs like rent, utilities and products used for services are a challenge. We manage this by working with the franchise partners to optimise their location and operational expenses. Central procurement of products helps bring down costs and optimise service revenues.
  • Managing and motivating staff: Staff retention and motivation are key drivers for the service industry. The staff needs to be customer-oriented and perform at their best in every service. Our HR teams conduct continuous engagement activities in salons and at the company level. Constant recognition & encouragement helps keep the staff motivated and our consumers happy.
  • Acquiring and retaining clients: Attracting the right clientele to your salon and keep getting them back is the backbone of our business. Through innovative services, best-in-class service standards, a comprehensive loyalty programme – the Lakme Salon Runway Rewards Program and seasonal promotions, we work to ensure that our customers receive the best experience with every visit and Lakme Salon remains their preferred beauty partner at every step.
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