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Aug, 08 2012

RIDING ON A WAVE OF SUCCESS

In a stint of just six years, Hemant Shah, Franchisee, Firefox Bikes, has opened four stores from a small 300 sq.ft outlet. In a candid conversation with Beny Sachdeva, he talks about how he rode on his business cycle to achieve success.

In a stint of just six years, Hemant Shah, Franchisee, Firefox Bikes, has opened four stores from a small 300 sq.ft outlet. In a candid conversation with Beny Sachdeva, he talks about how he rode on his business cycle to achieve success.

What inspired you to take the franchise of Firefox Bikes?

I have been in the bicycle retail business for over 35 years. When I came across the Firefox association opportunity, it was like taking a big leap from a traditional retail to an organised one. I had a gut feeling that the time had come for the change and went ahead and tied up with Firefox.

Your journey with Firefox…

It began in 2006 with a small 300 sq ft outlet at Indranagar. Now I have four outlets and a size touching as much as 5000sq ft.

How has been the growth so far?

I have expanded the number of stores in different parts of Bangalore at Jayanagar, Mantri Mall Malleshwaram, and Mainguard Road near Commercial Street, which is the biggest one of all measuring 5000 sq ft. The sales have been increasing consistently and offerings at my stores have also reached to 70 models of bikes and a wide range of accessories.

The most important element to be a successful franchisee…

Keep yourself in line with company's vision and concept by providing quality products, quality services and quality buying experience to the customer.

What is the importance of training and support in a franchise model?

Training is very crucial because products and technologies keep on changing and advancing. A franchisee must receive regular training to handle every query of the customer. We also get marketing support from the company to promote and create a recall of our presence.

The best thing about your franchise brand and franchisor…

My franchise brand Firefox works with ethics and my franchisor is very supportive and reachable for all my needs.

Do you plan to open more outlets of the same brand or any other brand?

I plan to open another outlet by the end of this year of Firefox itself. I am married to the brand and would live up to its loyalty.

Your views regarding the industry…

The industry is changing at a great pace. From the time when bicycle as a product was looked upon only as a mode of transport, it is now on its way to becoming a lifestyle product having a huge benefit related to health and environment.

Any message to potential franchisee of Firefox…

It is a great business opportunity. The company has the vision, ethics and commitment and it is a great industry to be attached to.

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