Cambridgeshire and Norfolk home care company director nominated for ‘Female Entrepreneur of the Year’ at prestigious awards

August 31, 2018

Bluebird Care company director has been nominated for the ‘Female Entrepreneur of the Year’ award at a prestigious ceremony.

Carolyn Dailey, a Bluebird Care franchise owner, was nominated for the award, as part of the Forward Ladies Awards and Summit, by one of her colleagues for her “dedication and success since joining Bluebird Care”.

“The awards recognise the achievements of business women in the UK. They hope to encourage the growth of professional women through these awards by being a national platform to showcase their achievements and celebrate successful women across the UK,” a spokesman said.

Lily Crook, franchise relationship manager at HSBC Business Banking, who nominated Carolyn, said: “She began at Bluebird Care by opening the Newmarket and Fenland franchise.

Related: What makes an award-winning franchise?

“She quickly became very successful in this area and decided to invest in a second franchise nearby, Bluebird Care Kings Lynn and West Norfolk.

“Having secured this second territory, Carolyn’s business endeavours have gone from strength to strength.

“Not only is the business financially successful, but Carolyn is incredibly passionate and really does care about the Bluebird Care brand and the customers her businesses serve.

“Carolyn is also extremely ambitious and is always looking for a new challenge to take on. She is looking to move premises while also tackling the other ambitions and goals she has for her businesses.

“Her determination and work ethic know no bounds and there is no doubt Carolyn will continue to make her businesses the best they can be.”

The Midlands regional final will be held on October 26 and is set to be a “wonderful evening”.

The winners from this, and the other regional finals, will be invited to appear before a live panel of independent judges in November, followed by the National Grand Final in Leeds on December 7.

Griselda Togobo, Forward Ladies Managing Director, said: “The FL National Awards and Summit will celebrate exceptional women and the contribution they make to the UK economy.

“Leaders, men and women will be brought together to discuss the transformative role that companies can play to support gender equality and the role a diverse work force will play in advancing UK competitiveness.

“Events like this are essential as we strive for gender parity and inclusive leadership”.

Source: Wisbech Standard

City cheers windfall from Whitbread’s £3.9 billion Costa sale to Coca-Cola

August 31, 2018

Whitbread shares rocketed on Friday as investors lined up for a windfall from the shock £3.9 billion sale of coffee chain Costa to US drinks giant Coca-Cola.

The UK consumer giant, which also owns hotel chain Premier Inn, stunned the City by offloading Costa to Coke. Shares surged 16% today to the highest level in three years with Costa’s price tag £1 billion more than expected.

Whitbread will hand back most of the money to investors, with analysts expecting between £2.5 billion and  £3 billion to be returned.

The rest will pay down the pension scheme deficit and cut debt.

Whitbread chief executive Alison Brittain said: “It’s an all round fantastic deal for all stakeholders.”

The FTSE 100 giant unveiled plans to spin-off the chain in April after coming under pressure from activist shareholders Elliott and Sachem Head.

Costa had originally been valued at £2.9 billion and was due to be demerged into a standalone group by the middle of 2020.

Related: Largest UK Costa franchisee offloads 25% of its estate

Costa is unlikely to attract another bidder after Whitbread ruled out selling the firm to private equity groups.

“We have been very clear we were not interested in a sale other than to someone who had a strategic rationale and therefore would be able to create signficantly more value than Costa on its own,” said Brittain, who added Elliott had no role in the sale.

For New York-listed Coca-Cola the takeover gives the company an instant number two position behind Starbucks in the lucrative global coffee market.

It plans to further build out the Costa franchise, which has a presence in 30 countries globally, in places like China. Brittain said Coke had run the rule over Costa before the demerger plans were announced after Whitbread took sole control of a franchise in China. “When we bought out China last year that made them sit up and take notice,” she said.

Rothschild advised Coca-Cola while Goldman Sachs’ Anthony Gutman led the advice for Whitbread.

The price tag is around 16.4 times Costa’s earnings for 2018, higher than the 14.4 times value rival Starbucks trades at. “They’ve done very well (on the price). Clearly Coke’s a strategic buyer and will have grand plans for it,” said one top 20 shareholder.

Source: Standard

Dog grooming business launches range of perfumes for your pampered pooch

August 30, 2018

Fluffies Mobile Dog Grooming, a well-established dog grooming company has launched its own range of fragrances – for man’s best friend.

Fluffies Mobile Dog Grooming is now helping customers to have the sweetest smelling pooches thanks to the development of a range of pet-friendly perfumes.

Owner Karen Weeks-Lepke now offers three different ‘eau de pawfums’ – Devotion, Mischief and Intuition – which are all made from top-quality natural ingredients and supplied in recyclable glass bottle.

While one is an aftershave aimed at dogs, another has a more fruity scent for bitches and the third is unisex.

They are described as ‘premium products’ and retail at £19.99 for each with £3.95 shipping – a similar price to Versace Red Jeans or Britney Spears’ new perfume Midnight Fantasy.

Karen, from Cheddleton, first set up the business in 2011 and now offers mobile dog grooming across Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent t and parts of Cheshire including Crewe.

But she always knew she wanted to expand the business with an innovative range of products.

She said: “The client base grew quickly, mainly by word of mouth.

“The service didn’t include bathing the dog which allowed a very favourable price point for the customers.

“Within five years Fluffies was covering most of Staffordshire, but I found that I was spending so much time grooming dogs that I was struggling to find time to develop the business.

Fluffies has launched a range of dog perfumes – Devotion, Mischief and Intuition

“The next natural step was to create a suitable quality product for both dogs and cats that would leave the coat feeling fresh and silky with a suitable perfume-based fragrance that would last much longer than the usual finishing sprays.”

Related: Pet Franchises in the UK – Turn Your Passion into a Business

It was at this point that Karen heard about, and promptly signed up for, the Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce mentoring scheme – Let’s do Mentoring.

After exploring her idea of franchising, Karen finally decided to recruit a second fully-qualified groomer allowing her more time to develop the fragrances and fuel the business expansion.

An integral part of the service was to use a finishing spray on the dog’s coat, but Karen was always disappointed by the products available as the fragrances quickly faded.

Karen added: “I’m now fully committed to marketing the fragrances and really excited about where the business is heading.”

The three different scents on offer for your pampered pooch

Devotion – eau de pawfum

Devotion is a fruity, self-contained little jewel of joy that has a delicious, sweet and luscious scent.
The key fruit used is of the pomegranate berry that originates from the Middle East. By using the fresh and fruity warm aroma from this berry with it’s vibrant red skin, fused with the sweet-tart aroma of it’s seed; Fluffies are able to keep your pet smelling so delightful that you will want to hug them more than you already do.

Mischief – aftershave

Mischief is a truly distinctive natural living fragrance that gives a light woody-green top note accented with the hint of jasmin and mossy undertones.
Fluffies has created Mischief to leave your pets smelling wonderfully masculine.
The fresh fragrance fills your senses with visions of woody pathways of a magical forest.
The blend of the three scents creates a soft, warm and unique harmony.

Intuition – unisex pawfume

Intuition is a blend of natural fruits, apple and lemon with a hint of grapefruit.
A Unisex Pawfume that will freshen up your pet’s coat with it’s charismatic zest aroma.
Each spray will fill your senses with the vibrant yellow of a lemon orchard in full blossom, surrounded by it’s natural beauty.

Source: Stoke Sentinel

Profits jump to €29.8m at operator of Spar stores

August 30, 2018

Pre-tax profits at the owner of the Spar franchise in Ireland, the BWG Group, rose by 23pc to €29.83m last year.

BWG Unlimited Company and subsidiaries operate a network of stores across Ireland and the UK and revenues at the group increased marginally, from €1.392bn to €1.41bn, in the 12 months to the end of September last.

A breakdown of the group’s revenues show that 87.5pc were generated in the Republic of Ireland, totalling €1.22bn, with the remaining €174.6m generated in the UK.

Numbers employed last year fell from 1,940 to 1,877 with staff costs increasing from €60.9m to €70.79m.

The group operates the Spar, Spar Express and Eurospar franchise in Ireland and the south-west of England and also operates under the Mace, Londis and XL brands in Ireland.

The group also operates Irish and UK distribution centres which supply its affiliated retailers.

It also operates 21 cash and carry outlets under the Value Centre brand throughout Ireland which supply the independent retail sector, the licensed trade, foodservice and hospitality sectors.

The directors said they consider that both the results for the year and the trading prospects for the future are satisfactory and it is their intention to continue to develop the existing business.

The group’s operating profits last year increased by 18.5pc, from €28.12m to €33.2m. The group recorded its pre-tax profit of €29.8m after finance costs of €3.4m. The operating profits take account of non-cash depreciation and amortisation costs of €13.7m.

The cash pile increased from €45.88m to €50.19m. The group enjoyed post-tax profits of €27.23m after paying corporation tax of €2.59m.

Pay to three directors, John Clohisey, Leo Crawford and John O’Donnell, last year increased from €1.04m to €1.07m.

The Johannesburg-listed Spar South Africa (SSA), owns an 80pc stake in BWG and earlier this year reported to investors that sales at BWG rose 2.9pc to €730m in the six months to the end of March this year.

SSA revealed that Storm Emma, which paralysed transport services here and sparked panic sales of bread and other food items, helped drive “significant turnover growth” at BWG.

SSA stated: “The business recorded significant turnover growth in the month of March, not only impacted by the earlier Easter, but also driven by the major storm weather that closed down large portions of Ireland and the United Kingdom as consumers bought in large quantities of food and beverages.”

The accounts reveal that in July 2016, the group paid £12.25m for UK retail firm, Appleby Westward Group.

Cost of sales in the 12 months to the end of September last totalled €1.2bn and other costs last year included warehousing and distribution expenses of €60.2m; marketing and selling expenses of €54.6m and administrative and IT expenses of €44.27m.

Source: Independent

Hyatt to grow UK footprint as new brand is launched

August 29, 2018

Hotels group Hyatt is on track to grow its UK footprint, with plans to open a new site at Great Scotland Yard as part of major brand launch.

The US company’s UK presence is small compared with its global footprint, with just five sites in the country – four in London and one in Birmingham.

But it is expanding rapidly, having recently confirmed the opening of one of its so-called Unbound Collection sites, based in the former home of the London Metropolitan Police at Great Scotland Yard for next year.

The Press Association understands a second UK location is also in the pipeline but details of its exact location and sub-brand under the Hyatt umbrella has yet to be publicly confirmed by the company.

Despite having recently backed off from a potential offer for Spain’s NH Hotels, Hyatt’s president and chief executive, Mark Hoplamazian, earlier this month said Europe remains a key focus for the business.

“We see a lot of opportunity here in the UK, we feel we’re under-represented. That’s why the team is working extremely hard at exploiting these opportunities,” Peter Fulton, an executive vice president for Hyatt hotels, told the Press Association.

Related: Travel and Leisure Franchises UK – Should You Buy A UK Travel Agency Franchise?

“We don’t see the development pipeline slowing down over the next five years.”

Hyatt has bolstered its London-based development team – which serves the whole of Europe and was previously located in Zurich – with three new appointments and an internal transfer.

“We increased our development presence here in London to be closer to where the capital is and that’s proven to be a bit of a godsend as well, so that’s really helped stimulate this whole pipeline,” he said.

Peter Fulton, is an executive VP for Hyatt hotels and its president covering Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South-West Asia (PA)

Peter Fulton, is an executive VP for Hyatt hotels and its president covering Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South-West Asia (PA)

Day-to-day Mr Fulton – who also oversees Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South-West Asia – said the team is talking to potential operators, independent hotel and land owners across the region, as well as capital partners and sovereign wealth funds looking for investment opportunities.

That is in addition to a fresh push into franchising.

Related: Hyatt Announces Plans For Hyatt Place London City/East

“We’ve been in the UK for 30 years plus, but because we weren’t franchising and so forth we didn’t really see the growth that chains have, and now we have that growth coming through,” Mr Fulton said.

He sees a particular need to be in Edinburgh – a location where he says Hyatt customers “want to go”.

“So not being in Edinburgh is a problem for us.”

In the meantime, the company is trying to extend its reach by launching a loyalty programme with 500 small luxury hotels across the world, many of which will be based in Europe.

Mr Fulton explained that more than 87% of those locations – many of which are yet to be announced – are in places where Hyatt has yet to set up shop.

“There’s the innovation that comes in – how do we fight above our weight and give … opportunities to our loyalty partners?”

When asked whether Edinburgh sites were in the mix, Mr Fulton hinted at a potential partnership.

“I was speaking to one of the owners there yesterday and it was about exactly that, so that will come out towards the end of the year when that’s all finally dotted and crossed.”

However, he stressed that a Hyatt hotel is still on the cards for Edinburgh.

“That will not preclude us from going and opening a hotel there on our own. So this is a placeholder.”

Source: Daily Mail

High five for babyballet as dance franchise celebrates quintet of award nominations

August 29, 2018

A Halifax-based ballet business which has multiple franchises across the world has been shortlisted for no fewer than five industry awards. Babyballet has been nominated in the ‘What’s On 4 Little Ones 2018 Awards’ for the Best Product Supporting Children’s Activities, twice for Most Outstanding Activity Leader for U5s in the South East and London categories, and for Best Franchised/Licensed Baby and Toddler Activity (more than 50 franchises).

Founder of babyballet, Claire O’Connor, is also a finalist in the Industry Champion of the Year category of the awards which is in its 12th year and is the UK’s leading and longest established awards for the sector. A massive 70,000 customer votes were cast in total with the Industry Champion of the Year gong voted for exclusively by high-profile industry judges.

Related: Buying and Running A UK Children’s Franchises – What Does It Take?

“I am so happy for babyballet to be recognised in so many categories. It’s even better to see individuals highlighted for their brilliant work across our franchises and these nominations are a testament of the hard-work from our staff,” said Claire.

“I am overwhelmed to be shortlisted for the Industry Champion award, it’s something I never expected but I’m so happy to be amongst such fantastic leaders in the industry.”

Claire and the babyballet brand are no strangers to being recognised, having won numerous awards including ITV Mumpreneur, Best Business Parent at the Mum and Working Awards, Loved by Children Awards (2018), Loved by Parents Awards (2017), Women in Business’ Retail Business (2015), Halifax Courier Young Business Person (2007) and Entrepreneur (2008). Claire also featured in a Channel 4 documentary ‘Big Ballet’ exploring issues of size in the world of ballet.

Related: Why babyballet founder is travelling the globe

Babyballet was founded in 2005 to create a dance experience for six months to six-year-olds to dance, gain confidence and shine, in a fun, caring and supportive environment, away from the traditional strict and serious classes often associated with ballet.

With 74 franchises currently in the UK, Claire successfully expanded the business into Australia and New Zealand last year, establishing 33 new franchises down under with more in the pipeline.

Over 25,000 children now enjoy babyballet on both sides of the world every week. Claire, 45, is currently on a 12-month trip with her husband Chris, 43, and three of their four children, Charlie, 14, Claudia, 12, and 10-year-old Kitty as they visit the likes of Canada, America and Japan to look into expanding the babyballet brand even further.

The ‘What’s On 4 Little Ones’ award winner’s ceremony takes place on October 3 at NatWest in Bishopsgate, London.

Source: Halifax Courier

This entrepreneurial mother quit a top level job to launch a successful artistic venture

August 28, 2018

An entrepreneurial mother who swapped a high-powered project management career to launch her own ceramics business, Popolo Ceramico, is on course to open 50 franchises within three years.

Christina Taylor-Chisholm was working as a project manager for telecoms giant BT when she had her daughter Lola.

Keen to spend more time with her daughter she quit her job and returned to her artistic roots, having studied art at Newcastle .

Mrs Taylor-Chisholm had always had a passion for ceramics so invested in a kiln, retrained in the skill and created a job which meant she could work her own hours within a creative environment.

That was eight years ago and the resulting business, Popolo Ceramico, has proven a success with its personalised bowls, baubles and cups, as well as its prints of children’s hands and feet.

entrepreneurial mother
Christina Taylor-Chisholm with her daughter Lola, eight, and Zac, five (Image: Unknown)

After finding success with her venture, Mrs Taylor-Chisholm has expanded the business through a number of franchises across the North East, also creating a raft of jobs.

The mobile business is based in Newcastle’s Biscuit Factory but she is now looking to expand the business nationally with the ultimate goal of opening 100 franchises.

Ms Taylor-Chisholm said: “I have five franchisees in the North East and they all work at home. They go to mother and baby coffee mornings and groups, where they set up.

Related: Encouraging Women into Franchising to celebrate its 10-year anniversary

“I have taken on three new franchises in Yorkshire and one in West Sussex as well.

“I took on my first franchise in Gateshead where I did a pilot and it went really well. I advertised regionally and took on another four franchises.

“But it is over the last six months that we have expanded nationally. We are now advertising across the UK.

“We are going location by location at the moment. The target is to get 100 franchises. If I get to 100, then it is happy days.

“I am hoping to get to 50 within five years of setting up the franchises, so within the next three years.”

As well as selling a variety of ceramic gifts, Ceramico Popolo also caters to children’s parties and its personalised piggy banks were even featured in an advert for KFC.

“The marketing company from KFC phoned me up and said they needed personalised piggy banks and they needed them within two week,” said Mrs Taylor-Chisholm.

“They needed 50 and they were really keen, so we worked day and night to get them done.

“On the advert they smashed a lot of them which is why they needed so many made.”

She has also designed the logo for North East children’s charity, the Graham Wylie Foundation.

Popolo Ceramico has proved not only a commercial success but has also improved the work/life balance for many of the franchisees, and resulted in an award.

Mrs Taylor-Chisholm recently won an award for Self-Employed Parent of the Year at the Mum and Working award ceremony in London.

Commenting on the award win she said: “I was delighted to win the award. I love the job I’ve created and I wanted to give others the same opportunity to be creative, earn a great income, but most importantly spend time with their families and have a great work/life balance.”

Source: Chronicle Live

Lettings franchise calls for incentives to prevent UK landlords selling up

August 28, 2018

More landlords are selling up, and less are investing in the Private Rental Sector (PRS) in the UK due to increased legislation and punitive taxation policies, it is claimed. National lettings franchise Belvoir is calling for the Government to take urgent remedial action in the Autumn Budget to incentivise landlords who thinking of leaving the sector.

It says that it should be remembered that they are providing much needed good quality accommodation for the UK’s growing tenant population.

‘Property supply and tenant demand is something that Lettings franchise Belvoir has been tracking closely, ever since the Government embarked on a flawed policy to try and reduce the number of investment landlords so that more first time buyers could enter the market,’ said Belvoir chief executive officer Dorian Gonsalves.

‘Lettings franchise Belvoir has continually warned that this policy would not work, as the UK’s rising population requires more homes across all tenures, including those people wishing to buy, people wanting to rent privately, and of course people requiring social housing,’ he added.

The latest Lettings franchise Belvoir rental index covering the second quarter of 2018 shows that more agents than ever before are reporting that landlords are selling up. A sample survey of Belvoir franchisees reveals that there has been a slight increase from 46% to 48% in the number of offices reporting that their landlords are selling up to three properties.

There was also an increase from 7% to 17% of landlords selling between six to 10 properties. One Belvoir office reported that they currently have 17 families on notice due to landlords putting their properties on the market.

The also shows a slight increase in average rental growth across the UK, with a similar number reporting static rents, but Gonsalves pointed out that if landlords continue to sell up because their business model in the PRS is being continually attacked, it will undoubtedly result in a further shortage of properties, and inevitable increases in rents.

Related: Belvoir boosts franchise support with three new hires

He also pointed out that there are concerns about the possibility of mandatory three year tenancies and this may also influence the decision of landlords, and there are real concerns that there could be an increase in homelessness, as there is insufficient social housing to accommodate people.

‘The majority of landlords are not actively against three year tenancies. Our survey shows that tenants are already remaining in their homes for longer, with 40% staying for 19 to 24 months, and 17% choosing to rent a property for over two years,’ Gonsalves explained.

‘One office reported that their average tenants are staying for over four years, with another reporting the average as 2.5 years. Should three year tenancies become mandatory, landlords need reassurance that they can gain possession of their property when needed, and will be protected against tenants who do not pay their rent, or abuse a property or indulge in anti-social behaviour,’ he said.

‘We are urging the Government to do more in the Autumn Budget to address stock shortages in the UK, by incentivising the new build sector with low maintenance homes through more Help to Buy and Buy to Rent schemes to provide more homes to own. Landlords also need rewards and incentives to encourage them to remain in the PRS, such as reversing current tax increases and introducing tax breaks, as well as initiatives such as tax incentives for landlords who buy large properties and turn them into several affordable and low maintenance flats suitable for the rental sector,’ he added.

‘It is anticipated that more landlords will make a decision about whether to retain their portfolio in 2019, when tax bills have been calculated and the true extent of any further erosion to their profits is seen. The Autumn Budget is the perfect time for the Government to introduce the incentives that landlords who offer good quality properties at a reasonable rent really need,’ he concluded.

Source: Property Wire

Chancellor says no deal Brexit will damage UK GDP for years to come

August 27, 2018

Chancellor Philip Hammond has outraged pro-Brexit Conservative MPs by warning that the UK may have to increase its borrowing by £80bn a year by 2033/34 in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

They have accused him of scare-mongering about the impact of leaving the EU on World Trade Organisation (WTO) terms rather than with a negotiated withdrawal agreement, and poured scorn on the Treasury’s analysis he has based his estimates on.

Yeovil MP Marcus Fysh tweeted that it was time to rev up his “take down of the Treasury’s incredibly dubious Brexit forecasts, since the chancellor seems determined to wheel them out again for yet another instalment of dodgy project fear”.

Meanwhile, Jacob Rees-Mogg, MP for North East Somerset and chairman of the European Research Group, told the BBC’s Newsnight last night that “the Treasury’s Brexit panic means you can no longer trust the Treasury’s forecast”.

Related: What impact is Brexit uncertainty having on the UK economy?

Hammond’s warning is contained in a letter he sent yesterday to Nicky Morgan, chair of the Treasury Select Committee.

In it he reiterates the findings of a cross-Whitehall briefing, published in January, which estimated that a no-deal/WTO Brexit would have an adverse impact on GDP over a 15-year period, reducing it by 7.7%.

He adds that additional analysis has indicated that chemicals, food and drink, clothing, manufacturing, cars and retail would be negatively affected in the long run, “with the largest negative impacts felt in the north east and Northern Ireland”.

“GDP impacts of this magnitude, were they to arise, would have large fiscal consequences,” he writes.

“The January analysis estimated that borrowing would be around £80bn a year higher under a no deal/WTO scenario by 2033-34, in the absence of mitigating adjustments to spending and/or taxation, relative to a status quo baseline. This is because any direct financial savings are outweighed by the indirect fiscal consequences of a smaller economy.”

Hammond says the analysis is currently being refined but he expects it to show that there will be a more damaging effect on the economy and public finances where there are higher barriers to trade with the EU. “These are conclusions that many other credible external organisations have come to independently, including the IMF, the OECD, the LSE and NIESR,” he adds.

In the letter, he gives his backing to the July White Paper – the Chequers agreement – and suggests that the economic and fiscal impacts of its proposals will be significantly better than no deal, “protecting jobs and livelihoods and supporting the UK and EU’s commitment to no hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland”.

Earlier this week, Rees-Mogg wrote to Conservative associations urging them to reject the Chequers agreement which he believes would “shackle [the UK] to the EU forever”.

“We would be out of Europe yet still run by Europe,” the letter said. “This is why the prime minister should ‘chuck Chequers’ and instead seek a Canada-style free trade agreement with the EU to make the most of the global opportunities that lie ahead.”

He added that it was time the government realised that the EU stands to lose much from a no-deal Brexit and “stopped being cowed by the EU’s threats”.

Source: Economia

‘Work from home’ Bournemouth travel agency enjoying rapid growth

August 27, 2018

BOURNEMOUTH-based The Travel Franchise, the franchise recruitment arm of award-winning travel agency Not Just Travel, is undergoing rapid growth and expansion.

In July, The Travel Franchise welcomed 30 new franchisees and increased its head count by 20 per cent.

What’s more, new franchise sign ups have almost doubled for the year to date versus the same period last year. In addition to the company’s speedy expansion, The Travel Franchise has also taken on additional space at its headquarters at the Basepoint Business Centre, near Bournemouth Airport, to accommodate its growing team.

Co-founder Steve Witt said: “We have welcomed a number of new starters over the last few months across our support, marketing and accounts functions.

Related: Travel and Leisure Franchises UK – Should You Buy A UK Travel Agency Franchise?

“They will be providing valuable support to our franchisees, as well as helping us to continue to grow the business.

“We have ambitious plans to grow our franchise network to 1,000 franchisees by 2020, providing opportunities for many more entrepreneurial individuals who are keen to start their own travel consultancy businesses and join one of the UK’s fastest growing travel companies.

“With a record number of franchisees signed up for the year to date, we are confident about meeting our target.”

Related: Travel franchise firm targets 1,000 franchisees by 2020

He added: “Many of our franchisees do not have previous experience of the travel industry, but all possess a passion for travel.”

Founded by entrepreneurial duo Steve Witt and Paul Harrison, The Travel Franchise now has more than 600 franchisees, each with their own home-based travel consultancy. The company reported record sales in May this year, with nearly 40 new franchisees signed up in just one month.

The firm has more than 17 years’ experience in the travel industry. With low-cost start up fees, franchisees can enjoy all the benefits of working from home, along with the opportunity for global travel.

Franchisees attend a comprehensive training course on their appointment and regular courses are run at overseas locations.

Mr Harrison said: “We have seen a strong start to 2018 and are well-placed to meet our growth targets for 2020, hence the need to boost our head office team.

“We have also taken on additional space at Basepoint, which has been our headquarters since 2011 to accommodate our burgeoning business.

“We are extremely optimistic for the future. The travel industry is an exciting, fast-paced sector and we expect our growth to continue apace.”

Source: Bournemouth Echo