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Jul, 07 2014

Young turks @ investors’ services

In the vast arena of services, there are opportunities galore for the young and the courageous. The youth, which often brings about the much needed change in the society seems to have taken to services and are carving a niche for themselves in their respe

Services business provides a wonderful opportunity to many young entrepreneurs as there are many segments within the gamut of services business that provides a low cost opportunity for them. From cleaning and laundry services to health and beauty, there are young entrepreneurs in all these industries trying to make a mark for themselves. Let's take you through some of the interesting franchise opportunities available in the services arena.

Cleaning Industry

The laundry market-

According to a KPMG study, the current demand of laundry outsourcing in India is pegged at Rs 5,000 cr. There are strong attempts being made to organise this unorganised sector that is primarily dominated by the maids and washermen or 'dhobis'. There are many brands in this particular industry that are young and thriving and on their way to making it big on the national front.

Established in 2010, Quick Clean Pvt. Ltd is one of the first few companies to introduce the concept of laundromats and self service laundry in India. Quick Clean has been successfully managing and servicing community laundry facilities in various residential complexes, colleges, universities and other multi-housing facilities.

Quick Clean Pvt. Ltd considers timely after sales services and robust training programme for its franchise partners to be important contributors in its success. It also takes pride in being environment-friendly, as its machines consume less water and electricity as compared with domestic washing machines and processes. The brand provides all support and training to its franchisees and also helps its young associates/ partners garner sufficient funds.

Another brand to align with in this segment is 5asec. With successful franchising record globally, the brand brings its time-tested and proven success model to India via its Master Franchisee in the country, SB Fabcare Pvt. Ltd.

Starting its operations in 2010 in India, the brand opened its flagship outlet in Mumbai. With gradual understanding of the market, the brand started exploring likes and dislikes of the Indian consumer and since then it has grown to seven stores in Mumbai itself.

5asec offers multiple options of franchise arrangement, depending upon potential partners. It provides a good platform for 'mompreneurs' and also helps its partners procure necessary funds.

“As principal franchisee in India, we have good support from the parent brand based in Switzerland, and also we have good tie-ups with investors and financial institutions who believe in our model”, says Suresh D Bhatia, Director, SB Fabcare Pvt. Ltd (Master Franchisee for India, 5asec).

Providing lucrative opportunity to women entrepreneurs and working professionals interested in earning secondary income; is the brand “Wassup - Just Laundry”, coming from the company Laundry Project India Pvt. Ltd. With the agenda of providing maximum convenience, at the minimum possible cost and lowest possible harm to the environment; Wassup defines itself as an affordable and convenient neighbourhood daily laundry service.

It is interesting to note that this young brand which comprises professionals from Laundry, Retail, Hospitality and Apparel industries; doesn't aim to take on the washermen community as competition. Rather it is taking steps to involve washermen and integrate them into their system, so that they aren't robbed of their livelihood. The brand offers store, area and master franchise opportunities. Also, Wassup supports its franchisees in getting loans processed through their banking network.

Tank Cleaning-

Apart from the laundry services, cleaning services also provide good scope of growth and diversification for the young minds and so, even in this industry one notices the rise of young entrepreneurs. FastClean, a mechanized tank cleaning brand started out in 2006 under the banner of WC in the tier-II city of Raipur, Chhattisgarh.

“People laughed at us as they thought nobody would pay premium price for “tank cleaning” which is quite a simple act and can be done manually too, with anybody's help”, recollects Manoj Agarwal, CEO, FastClean.

But Mr. Agarwal's vision paid off. Neatly uniformed and trained labourers working with sophisticated and up-to-date equipment and delivering solutions soon became a hit with the customers.

With corporate clients like Apollo Hospitals, Municipal Corporations, Balco, RBI, SBI, Grasim, Ultratech, Lafarge etc to boast of, the brand has cleaned more than 40,000 tanks in the last eight years.

Car Cleaning Services-

Another domain within the cleaning services industry that has the youth looking at it is the car cleaning services domain. There are many young brands making a foray in this industry and cashing on the new trend.

3M Car Care is a brand that took wings more so in the last two years, primarily due to the strength of its business model. Opting for the franchise route proved beneficial for the brand and as of now, 15% of its franchisees have 2 stores.

On a global platform, 3M Car Care has been around for more than 100 years. The brand has grown well in India recently, partly on the strength of the parent brand and partly due to  high levels of customer experience and the product it offers.

“Car ownership in India is not only going to increase rapidly. The average car owner would be more inclined to maintain his/her car in future as a matter of status,” says Vishesh Nigam, Business Manager - Car Care.

Travel Industry-

According to a recent report, the Indian travel and tourism industry is likely to grow to US $128 billion by 2016. With the growth rate pegged at more than eight per cent per annum, the future of the travel industry looks bright in the time to come. As the latest trend of work-from-home and focus on tier II and tier III cities make the opportunity all the more appealing and cost effective, many young guns are foraying into it.

An interesting franchise opportunity in the travel sector comes from Modiglobe, the brand which endorses work-from-home, as it is easy to operate and provides a good opportunity to women.

Modiglobe, a part of the Modi Group of industries, offers home-based business model which lets one leverage his or her network of people while removing the unnecessary cost of an office space.

The brand which started franchising in 2013 is quite buoyant as it has been able to garner 161 franchisees in a matter of just one year.

With Modi Group's significant knowledge capital in the travel domain and more than two decades of experience in franchising in India, Modiglobe wants to make travel accessible to people from all strata of society while extending an opportunity to earn by selling travel services.

“Travel franchising, a new concept, seems to be picking up pace in the country. More people are realizing the earning and growth potential it holds and are willing to take it up as a business opportunity. We strongly feel that this trend is here to stay,” says Seana Wade, CEO, Modiglobe.

Believing in providing its customers 'cheaper than cheapest' travel products and services, EaseMyTrip.com is also offering franchise opportunity.

EaseMyTrip.com is the travel portal of Easy Trip Planners Pvt. Ltd, which started out in the year 2008. Presently, the company has its branches in all major cities of India and in Bangkok along with 42,000 travel agents and 412 franchise outlets. 

The brand gives complete training and support to its franchisees so they can enhance their skills to grow and develop the business.

Ezeego1.com was founded in 2006 with a market place concept, offering one of the widest ranges of travel products in the Indian market. Ezeego1.com currently has a strong presence in 11 cities through 20 franchise stores.

“Having realised the need to offer customers the convenience of face-to-face interactions with us, in their respective cities, we decided to setup retail stores across India under the franchise model. Franchising is one of our key growth strategies,” says Neelu Singh, COO, Ezeego1.com.

Health and Beauty Industry-

The wellness industry in India is poised to touch Rs 1,00,000 crore (Rs 1 trillion) by 2015, with a CAGR of 15-17%, from about Rs 70,000 crore in 2012. Beauty care would continue to dominate with almost 50% (about Rs 49,000 crore), says a joint study by FICCI and PwC.

Being in demand, this field is high on the priority list of young franchisors and is witnessing many young and focused entrants. One such brand is Cleopatra.

Operational since 2003, Cleopatra is a young and growing chain of day spa, beauty and wellness clinics. The brand started franchising in 2009, after making a niche for itself in the Northern market (especially Punjab). Cleopatra further wants to explore its new concept of pronto spalon meant for people in rush and boutique hotel spas.

A new and innovative concept that has hit the beauty market off late is that of 'express format'. It promises quick services for a reasonable price. One brand that seems to be mastering this trend is Jawed Habib that is out with its latest offering- JH HairXpreso unisex salons.

The brand has brought designer haircuts within the realm of the common man by cutting down the frills associated with it. It is aimed at Indian youth that wants designer haircuts but at affordable prices. JH HairXpreso started out in June 2009 and has around 126 outlets across the country.

Even health industry, replete with alternate therapies and unique curative methods, is seeing the advent of young franchisors. One of the new concepts in this domain that’s on a rise is that of unique antenatal services.

‘Garbhasanskar’ that works in achieving physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, social development and perfection for the mother and baby. The brand follows a module based on yoga, meditation, music therapy and Ayurveda. It is a complete pregnancy care guideline to get a divine child. Targeting women entrepreneurs, preschool owners and chains of preschools to expand and strengthen the business, Garbhasanskar is looking for like-minded individuals to expand further.

With young franchisors making a mark in many industries, associating with them sounds like a good idea. Along with good returns, you can also look forward to a rush of new ideas and innovative methods to help your business grow.

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