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Nov, 01 2011

Multiple AVATARS, Multiple AVENUES

From leading home to workplace, city, nation and world, women entrepreneurs are raising their own bar and making their presence count in franchising business world too.

WONDERING how someone can manage home, kids, office, employees, work pressure etc? Don't be surprised, GenNext women entrepreneurs are 'smartly' doing the right mix of roles. The new-age multi-tasking women entrepreneurs are tapping the business world like never before!

Besides adding to their family income, women are treading on entrepreneurial journey to fulfil their career dreams and attain financial freedom for better lifestyle. Whether, it's her wish for a lucrative business or a part-time venture, franchising gives women an opportunity to balance both work and life and yet carve-out her own identity! Above all, franchise business model also provides her flexibile time to manage her priorities well. Whether its home-based, retail, education, health and beauty or food and beverage, women entrepreneurs are leading the front with an ever-lasting smile.

According to a research by Franchise India, there is an increase in women investors from 5 to 13 per cent in the past one year, which indicates that women are optimistically stepping ahead for financial freedom. Majority of them found franchise option more feasible than to start their own venture. It was also found that husbands were actively looking for a franchise for their wives, indicating the level of confidence and also the need for double income.

Gateway to prosperity

Journey of women from being a homemaker to a breadwinner is not a cake walk. Therefore, to become a successful entrepreneur there is nothing better than opting for an established business via franchise. There is no doubt that franchising is a perfect partner for womenpreneurs.

When asked about franchisability factor for womenpreneurs, Master Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, of Indian Cookery Pvt Ltd. (ICPL) says: “Franchising has helped women entrepreneurs grow in the competitive market. Women entrepreneurs have made it big with brands like Lakme, Kaya, VLCC etc. Our franchising model is totally standardised and has evolved over the years with in depth study and analysis of the business. Our standard operating procedure (SOP), manuals, mentoring/training, software, back office support and brand strength will add more than adequate support to our franchisees.”

Commenting on the same Anurag Kedia, Director, The Four Fountain Spa avers: “Most women entrepreneurs get excited about the wellness segment this is perhaps driven deep into the Indian women psyche, where wellness and beauty for women are now taking a special status given the dual role (homemaker and breadearner) the modern women plays. Since the segment is in a nascent stage and growing at an explosive pace, women, who decide to enter this sector now will witness a high growth over a period of time and also benefit from an early mover advantage in the segment.”

As the number seems to be mounting, franchisors targeting womenpreneurs are also carving special business models for them. “In My Wonderchef business, 90 per cent of entrepreneurs are women. In restaurants, it's mostly husband-wife show, but in future, I expect a lot of women joining us and that's why this special incentive for them,” Kapoor added. Listed below are a few reasons why should women opt for the same:

Safety net

The Indian market is at a stage where majority of industries are unorganised. Therefore, opportunities galore for 'womenpreneurs'. Especially, franchising makes things a lot easier, as one does not have to deal with the usual start-up pain and instead focus on running the established business. Franchising makes it easier, as all systems and procedures are already established. Women also tend to invest in an established business simply because it cuts the risks of starting from the scratch.

Balancing act

Flexible timing is utmost important for women. The corporate rat race structure is sometimes too inflexible for women to climb the success ladder. Franchising shows them a way to gain more autonomy. According to our research, around 60 per cent women franchisees are successful in women oriented businesses.

The prime reason of becoming a franchisee is flexibility in being a franchisee than working under someone, which allows women to balance their work and family. Looking at the growing number, many franchisors offer home-based franchises that are low in investment and high on returns.

Marching ahead

There is no precise list of sectors for women, but the highest percentage of franchises run and owned by women is generally found in fashion and lifestyle, education-based franchise, home-based franchise, health and beauty and children's products and services.

There is an increase in women investors from 5 to 13 pc in the past one year Around 60 pc women franchisees are successful in women-oriented businesses

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