Conversion franchise
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Sep, 16 2009

Conversion franchise

Conversion franchise is a jargon of franchisor’s glossary. Unlike the usual franchise offers, conversion franchises are offered exclusively to a class of people who are already into business. It is not offered to general people. Conversion franchisees are

Conversion franchise is a jargon of franchisor’s glossary. Unlike the usual franchise offers, conversion franchises are offered exclusively to a class of people who are already into business. It is not offered to general people. Conversion franchisees are the  established businessmen with proven experience and professional acumen.

Like in any other sphere, the franchisors give importance to experienced franchisees. It is obvious from our previous issue in which many franchisors in the stock broking business laid special emphasis over this point. And health and beauty sector is no exception in this regard.  In fact, there are more than numerous entrepreneurs, under this head, who started their independent businesses with their own identity, but after over a period of time, a lot of successful store owners desired to acquire brand recognition. The simple reason behind is the greed to attract more customers to their outlet.

Fear and greed could be the two important reasons for independent store owners to change their identity. But, the point to be noted is that the change in name and identification of conversion franchisee differs from one company to another. And the format is laid down in the company’s policy. But, after getting affiliated with any big brand, or becoming a franchisee of a big brand, it is quite obvious that the franchisee would like to exchange it with money and cash. In simple words, the franchisee would like to utilize the brand name for more number of prospective customers.

The greed of converting an independent business into a franchisee is of attracting more number of footfalls into one’s outlet. Along with it, the franchisee gets several types of supports like – training, guidance and pooling in of advertisement costs, from the  franchisor. As compared to other franchisees, conversion franchisees are more experienced in this turf. They know several tactics to run a business. But, we cannot deny the fact that guidance from bigger companies would add value to the experience of the franchisee. This attracts an independent business owner to join a franchise.

Today, the people are becoming more brand conscious. Even when they go to any unbranded store or any independent business store, they would like to buy the branded product. Generally, this could be seen in the local beauty parlors, where you can find customers asking for Shahnaz facial or skin treatment. This clearly shows the brand crave  and trust over brand. Such type of customers will be the first to move towards the branded stores/salons. Due to fear of losing such prospective clients, a successful beautician or a parlor owner might decide to become a part of a franchise. In order to hold the grip over such customers, and attract more customers, many independent salon owners would  like to join the longer chain of a bigger brand.

As a franchisee, one would get permission to use all important trade mark and trade services of the franchisor, and in turn, the franchisor would get an experienced franchisee, who needs less training and support, than a new entrant in the business. Health and beauty sector is one, where one can find many conversion franchisees.

Most of the brand names under this sector are ready to give franchise to such independent parlors, salons, gyms or health care centres.  Sandeep Ahuja of VLCC says, we are open to this idea. Vivekanand of Fitnessone says, “We have not yet converted any existing fitness center to Fitnessone. However, we are open to the idea and would like to have a partner.” Naunihal Singh of Strands and Parichay Upadhyay of New Look Laser Clinic also support the idea. Quizzing him on the layout pattern if required to be changed to become part of New Look Laser Clinic, Upadhya says, “Not many changes are required, because the existing set-up will already have the necessary infrastructure which can bring cost viability to the franchisee to a large extent.”

Yet, there are many franchisors who would not like to franchise their brand. It is so, because according to them, it is difficult to handle the contract with the existing owners, who are already in the fray, and have their own style of working.

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