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Jan, 05 2015

Love at first sight & still going strong

Every brand in the franchise trade feels proud of its association with its first franchisee. A first franchisee is someone who puts in all his efforts to build a brand along with the franchisors support. He may be called a pioneer, a leader or a perfectio

TFW spoke to first franchisees of some of the top brands in the franchising industry and got to know more on their experiences about the fast growing industry.

There are certain qualities that a first franchisee possesses. A first franchisee is selected with utmost care and extra caution by any brand. The person has to be better in every sense as compared to others in the organisation. The person must not only adapt himself to the changes coming up every year in the trade but he should also be ready to guide the new comers with his deep experience. There is no doubt about the fact that a first franchisee is not just a franchisee, but he is like a partner for the brand.

Subway

First Franchisee- Manpreet Gulri (India)

Changes you see in franchising

The acceptability of franchising as a business model of operation has grown in India over the past decade. Franchising limits the risk factors, allows expansion without the vast amounts of operating capital and creates a profitable picture for both.

Any prior experience in franchising

No

Best thing about your brand

All Subway restaurants are completely owned by local franchisees who are entrepreneurs that appreciate the opportunity to work hands-on at their restaurants.

One + ve point for first franchisee

It is an open ground of opportunities where examples can be set by achieving milestones.

One + ve point for first franchisee

Being the first franchisee, there is a lot to accomplish while there are no patterns to follow and no case studies to refer.

Why Subway?

Subway restaurant chain is renowned world over for its brand value, focus on consumer and distinctive brand proposition. With 42,000 restaurants in 107 countries and 472 restaurants across 70 Indian cities, Subway has been one of the most successful brands to adopt franchising in India.

Achievement

As somebody who introduced Subway to India, it is overwhelming to see that more and more consumers are now becoming conscious of a healthier lifestyle and perceive Subway as an integral part of their regimen.

Advice to would be first franchisees.

A first-time franchisee should be careful while selecting the franchisor and at the same time, be willing to invest his time, energy and resources in building up his business.

SHEMROCK Convent

First Franchisee- Bala Maingi

Changes you see in franchising

Franchising is improving each year. Since 1996, developments have gone faster in this industry.

Any prior experience in franchising

No

One best thing about your brand

System is very transparent

One + ve point for first franchisee

There is a lot of involvement by the franchisors

One -ve point for first franchisee

With more brands coming up, competition is definitely rising.

Why SHEMROCK?

I faced no problem in starting. I was a home maker and then with SHEMROCK Convent, I took up teaching as a career and then a franchisee. The journey has been inspiring.

Achievement

My rising confidence level is my achievement

Advice to would be first franchisees.

Always choose to join hands with a recognised educationist

Cookie Man

First Franchisee- Ravi Kumar

Changes you see in franchising

A lot of changes have come since 2012. Young entrepreneurs have increased tenfold and they constantly on the lookout to partner with top brands and unique concepts.

Any prior experience in franchising-

No

One best thing about your brand

Constant aggressive follow up on the quality, availability and day-to-day sale.

One + ve point for first franchisee

I have been there and succeeded because of exposure to the ever-growing world of retail

One - ve point for first franchisee

Trials, constant change to fit the customer's requirements

Why Cookie Man?

Cookie Man's concept and USP 'Fresh Baked Australian Cookies' was the main point of interest.

Achievement

Breaking even and opening the second store under one year. It was probably the most exciting year of my life.

Advice to would be first franchisees.

Go for it! Work hard and you will bake profits.

THOMAS COOK INDIA LTD

First Franchisee- Vishal Devendra Kapoor

Changes you see in franchising

With the evolution of the internet and the generation becoming more tech-savvy than ever, franchising has undergone 180 degrees of transformation.

One best thing about your brand

Having a legacy of innovation since 1841, the brand Thomas Cook is one of the oldest and the most respected brands in the travel industry.

Why Thomas Cook?

Opting for Thomas Cook was never a difficult choice. We were certain that growing under the umbrella of a reputed brand like Thomas Cook India would be a win-win situation.

Achievement

We have successfully operated our first outlet in Bhandup, moving on to Malad and Thane.  We are looking forward to opening fourth outlet soon.

JETKING INFOTRAIN LTD

First Franchisee- Vamshi Krishna

Changes you see in franchising

Franchising remains the same as the gap between the franchisor and franchisee in communicating expectations for the brand remains challenging.

One best thing about your brand

Commitment of the founder through market ups and downs and continuous learning and training for the franchisees.

One + ve point for first franchisee.

One can learn a lot from the brand

One - ve point for first franchisee.

Greed or temptations should not be the reason for business

Why Jetking?

Jetking was the No. 1 brand. There were competitors, but this brand believed to have a stronger value system compared to others and I got it right.

Achievement

I learnt a lot and this helped me to start my second franchise - both running successful since the last 11 years.

Advice to would be first franchisees.

Franchise business comes with expectations and you should be prepared to execute several responsibilities.

So, if you're trying to be the first franchisee for any brand or you are already one, make sure you are a go getter with a responsible attitude. Have realistic expectations and try to get the best deal for your franchisor.

 

 

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