Profits jump at Burger King UK as online sales surge

April 28, 2022

Burger King UK’s earnings almost tripled last year thanks to a jump in people ordering online.

The chain made sales of £211.7 million for the year to December 2021, which was 68% higher than in 2020 and well above pre-Covid levels.

Online orders now account for a quarter of the fast-food chain’s UK business, it said.

Burger King attributed this to higher sales made over its app, which increased user numbers by more than 60% to 1.3 million in 2021. Meat-free menu options such as the Vegan Royale and a plant-based Whopper burger also boosted sales.

Related: Fast Food Franchises in the UK – 10 Things Every Would-Be Franchisee Must Know

Pre-tax earnings for the period were £49.6 million, up from £17.2 million in 2020.

The company added 48 new restaurants to its portfolio last year and plans to open 200 more sites by 2026.

Alasdair Murdoch, CEO of Burger King UK, said: “Both delivery and drive-through sales were strong throughout 2021 and will remain key areas of focus as we execute on our growth strategy.

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“We have a strong development pipeline to further grow our UK footprint, and we are very well positioned to take advantage of the clear market opportunities ahead of us.”

Plans to float the business on the stock exchange stalled earlier this year after investors became nervous over the conflict in Ukraine.

The company never formally announced plans, but had reportedly hired bankers at Investec, Peel Hunt and Bank of America to advise on a potential listing.

Related: Burger King Franchise

Burger King UK, which manages the British franchise on behalf of US giant Restaurant Brands International, is owned by private equity firm Bridgepoint.

By Rhiannon Curry

Source: Standard

Razzamataz Theatre School Is Investing In The Health Of The Next Generation

April 25, 2022

The effects of school closures and lockdowns have been widely spoken about in terms of children’s health and development. In a recent interview, Chief Medical Officer Sir Chris Whitty describes potential for substantial impact on children’s health with mental welfare and childhood obesity significantly worse.

What all the experts agree on is the importance of getting young people moving and away from screens. To help working parents and provide inspiration for all families, Razzamataz Theatre Schools offer fun holiday activities throughout the UK, where children can make new friends, keep active and learn important life skills.

Razzamataz Theatre Schools is a Dragons’ Den backed franchise. Many of the schools have recently held Easter workshops, where children get to experience everything from street dance through to pop singing, acting for camera and traditional West End and Broadway musical theatre.

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Performing arts has many benefits including increased fitness and a chance to allow young people to express themselves and work through any emotional difficulties, leading to improved wellbeing and mental health.

“During the school holidays, finding things to keep children entertained day in and day out is not easy, which is why many parents look to holiday clubs, so children can be interactive with others, have fun and keep off technology,” says Denise Hutton-Gosney, MD and Founder of Razzamataz. “The last couple of years have meant that many children have missed out on crucial early interactions and are still finding the impact of lockdowns challenging. We build relationships with each student and their family, which helps them to improve their confidence and self-belief. Many children start out on day one so shy and timid, but by the end of the week, they have really come out of their shell and parents are shocked by the positive change.”

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There are Razzamataz schools up and down the country and there have been a range of Easter activities taking place before term time classes commence. One of the most important elements of the sessions is the chance to perform, an area that is often overlooked but is crucial to building children’s confidence. The themes are often inspired by popular films or shows so children really feel like they have stepped into the shoes of their favourite characters.

“Our teachers and staff are highly skilled in working with young people, which can transform the way they feel about themselves,” adds Denise. “The performing arts is incredibly beneficial to help young people build up positive communication skills that will enhance every area of their lives at home, school and beyond. It is a privilege to be in the position to help ensure the health and wellbeing of the next generation.”

Related: Razzamataz Franchise

Source: Franchising

Cake Box sales to top previous year by 50%

April 20, 2022

Celebration cake specialist Cake Box expects annual revenues to rise by 50% year-on-year, according to a full-year trading update.

The retail chain said business had been strong across its store estate and online delivery channels for the 12 months up to 31 March 2022 and has made its prediction based on adjusted profit before tax in line with market expectations.

Online delivery and click & collect options have continued to expand Cake Box’s customer base, the company said, and franchisee online sales increased around 41% during the year and 27% on a 10-month basis.

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Cake Box opened 11 new franchise stores (excluding kiosk openings) in the second half of the period, bringing the total number of stores opened in the full year to 31, compared with 24 in the previous year.

The company reported a continued high level of interest in its differentiated franchise proposition, with ‘strong demand’ for new stores from existing franchisees and a pipeline of new franchisee applicants resulting in 53 holding deposits being held at the end of the annual period.

The trial of Cake Box kiosks with Asda has continued to expand, with 10 new kiosks opened during the year, taking the total number of Asda kiosks to 15 in addition to 20 shopping centre kiosks.

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The company reported a ‘significant increase’ to its net cash position, which stood at £5.2m at the end of the period, compared with £3.6m for the previous year.

“We have delivered another record performance for the year, demonstrating the continuing appeal of our customer and franchisee proposition,” said Sukh Chamdal, Cake Box co-founder and CEO.

“Our strategy to reach customers across the UK is starting to deliver. This is thanks to the dedication, determination and commitment of the exceptional entrepreneurs in our Cake Box family, which continues to grow, providing opportunities for entrepreneurs, creating jobs and providing delicious, fresh cream cakes up and down the country,” Chamdal added.

By Jerome Smail

Source: British Baker

Canadian coffee and fast-food chain creates 75 jobs at Merry Hill

April 15, 2022

75 jobs are to be created as Tim Hortons opens a drive-thru site at Merry Hill.

The Canadian coffee and fast-food chain which has its UK headquarters in Wednesfield, plan to open at the 3,950 sq ft former Frankie and Benny’s site in Station Drive later this year.

It will be its fourth site in the West Midlands and will offer a mix of full and part-time roles, with seating up to 100 diners for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

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The move is part of Tim Hortons’ aim to bring the chain to every major town and city in the UK over the next year, creating more than 2,000 jobs.

Kevin Hydes, the chief commercial officer of the Tim Hortons franchise in the UK, said: “The demand for our renowned food and drink offering has continued to grow in the West Midlands, with all our restaurants in the county proving very popular amongst our guests.

“Brierley Hill is a great area and has a fantastic community with lots of leisure activities nearby, so opening here will help to bring our Canadian charm even closer to our fans nearby.

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“We are in the process of recruiting an excellent team to deliver the high levels of customer service that our guests are accustomed to. It’s an exciting time for our brand, and we look forward to welcoming everyone to Brierley Hill later this year.”

Jonathan Poole, centre manager at Merry Hill, added: “We are thrilled to welcome the renowned Canadian brand, Tim Hortons later this year, and we’re already hearing from customers how much they’re looking forward to it.

“The new drive-thru restaurant on the Upper Retail Park will give visitors great convenience; they can either grab on-the-go via the drive-thru or sit down and relax in the unique Tim Hortons dine-in experience.”

By Anna Cooper

Source: The Business Desk

Dundee woman runs sewing and knitting classes to de-stress thousands of people across the UK

April 14, 2022

Sandra Cassidy runs Sew Confident that has helped more than 10,000 folk – including thousands of NHS workers – switch off from the stress of daily life.

A Dundee woman is using her love of sewing and knitting to help de-stress thousands of people.

Sandra Cassidy, from Broughty Ferry, runs the city’s branch of Sew Confident, the UK’s only sewing franchise.

She runs loads of different sewing, knitting and crafting classes in Dundee – other franchisees of the company run sites in Glasgow and Chorley, in Lancashire.

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Over 10,000 people across the UK have joined their close-knit community which has de-stressing, connection and sustainability at its heart.

Sandra and her team welcome customers at any skill level.

In addition to learning new skills – from arm knitting chunky blankets and crocheting Easter gifts, to making clothes and lampshades – Sandra’s mission is to persuade people to switch off from their jobs and destress at Sew Confident Dundee’s sewing sanctuary.

What once was a hobby is now a thriving business that has seen her help clients sew, knit and crochet their way to better mental health, and a whole new social life in her studio.

Speaking to Dundee Live, Sandra said: “So many customers have said what a relief our classes have been for them and a welcome distraction from Covid and other stresses.

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“We’ve had so much amazing feedback from our customers and find it so interesting that so many of them work for the NHS or caregiving jobs.

“It has been such a stressful time in the healthcare industry and I’m humbled that I was able to help them through it in some way.”

Sandra’s love for crafts was triggered after her first child was born when she made a quilt for the baby, then quickly moving on to creating gifts and homeware for family and friends.

Sandra, who now has a team of seven staff, added: “My clients have also said how much the classes helped them to cope with loneliness during lockdowns and gave many people the social fix that they so desperately craved.

“We hosted live sew-alongs and classes regularly and created a community of supportive and ‘sewcial’ people.

“I’m desperate to convince more people in any line of work that sewing is the way forward to relax and switch off from the stresses of life.

“Sewing is such a tranquil activity. It’s almost like meditation, but at the end of it, you feel a huge sense of accomplishment that you’ve created something you can wear, use or gift to someone.

“Everyone should have the opportunity to take time for themselves and sewing is, in my opinion, the ultimate self care.”

Related: Sew Confident Franchise

Despite the challenges of the pandemic Sandra’s team offered customers DIY craft kits as well as online zoom classes.

Today, over a quarter of Sew Confident’s clientele are working in the NHS and other healthcare roles. The hobby is proving to be the ultimate de-stresser for those in high stress, care giving jobs.

One of those that have been helped is Tayside GP, Georgie Levison, 33.

She told us: “I was always so interested in signing up to the Beginners Sewing course but the courses range from 12-15 hours over a few days and sadly, due to my work and young family, I just didn’t have the time.

“It wasn’t until lockdown, when the Sew Confident team took classes online, that I was able to sign up, and I’ve never looked back!

“It was such a horrible time in the industry, and like so many others, I just knew I needed to do something to distract myself.

“Sew Confident was a lifeline for me. I got involved in courses, live sew-alongs, I even entered (and won!) one of their Facebook design challenges.”

And the doctor added: “I call it the secret world of sewing and I tell anyone who will listen about the benefits. It’s so easy to get sucked in because it’s the perfect balance between mindfulness and creativity.”

By James Moncur

Source: Daily Record

Pret A Manger to expand into Ireland creating 500 jobs

April 11, 2022

Around 500 jobs are to be created across the island of Ireland by coffee and sandwich chain Pret A Manger.

The company is to open up to 20 shops within the next decade, as part of its entrance into the Irish market.

The outlets in the Republic and Northern Ireland will be rolled out by Carebrook Partnership Limited under a franchise arrangement.

The first shop is set to open on Dawson Street in Dublin this summer, creating 25 jobs.

“Setting up shop in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland has been our plan for a long time, and we’re thrilled that we’re finally able to make it happen,” said Pano Christou, Chief Executive Officer at Pret A Manger.

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“There has long been demand from our neighbours on the island of Ireland to bring Pret’s freshly prepared food and organic coffee, and now with the backing of Carebrook Partnership Ltd we’re able to do so.”

“We look forward to making this partnership a success.”

Carebrook Partnership Ltd has worked with Pret for three decades and runs many of its stores in London where it is a common sight on city centre streets.

Carebrook is majority owned by UK and US food sector veteran, Gerard Loughran, who grew up in Nenagh, Co Tipperary.

Ray McNamara from Dublin, who has 25 years’ experience in the Irish food industry and owns Ann’s Bakery is also a minority shareholder.

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“We’ve been working with Pret for over three decades, ever since they arrived in London,” said Gerard Loughran, CEO, Carebrook Partnership Ltd.

“Having grown up in Tipperary, and with more than two decades of experience in the hospitality and food industry, I’ve always wanted to bring Pret to Ireland and Northern Ireland, so I’m delighted that this will soon become a reality alongside my co-owner Ray, who has great connections and links to the food sector in Dublin with 25 years’ experience.”

“We look forward to welcoming our new customers, soon.”

Last year Pret announced that it would aim to double the size of the business within five years, including launching into five new markets by the end of 2023.

Pret is owned by investment group JAB and founder Sinclair Beecham.

It currently has shops in the United Kingdom, United States, Hong Kong, France, Dubai, Switzerland, Brussels, Singapore and Germany.

By Will Goodbody

Source: RTE

Belvoir Swansea Named Best Franchise in UK

April 7, 2022

Belvoir Swansea has scooped the coveted Gold Award for Belvoir Franchise of the Year at the UK-wide Belvoir Annual Conference and Awards 2022, defeating 166 other franchises.

At the same award ceremony, the Swansea franchise, which is headed up by husband and wide duo, Ben and Daisy Davies, also won the Innovation Award for its dedication to new technology and their ability to grow and innovate during the pandemic.

Belvoir CEO Dorian Gonsalves, said: “I am absolutely thrilled that Ben and Daisy Davies of Belvoir Swansea, Mumbles and Sketty won the Gold Award for Franchise of the Year 2022. They are incredibly popular with everyone in the network and unsurprisingly received a standing ovation from everyone in attendance when their names were called out as winners of this prestigious award.

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“I’ve known Ben and Daisy since they first joined Belvoir 12 years ago. They took on the Belvoir Swansea office as a cold start business and have built their business up over the years, adding two more Belvoir offices in Mumbles and Sketty and literally gone from zero to heroes, becoming incredible ambassadors for the Belvoir brand. They are highly deserving of the title Belvoir Franchise of the Year and I would like to wish Ben, Daisy and the teams at Belvoir Swansea, Mumbles and Sketty many congratulations and every success for the future.”

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Speaking of their win, Ben Davies said: “Daisy and I are so happy and pleased! We won the Silver Award in 2020 and 2021, so to win Gold this year is just brilliant. We’ve always strived to win Gold and will definitely be striving to win it again next year. Daisy and I would like to thank our amazing team, who do so much every day to help us achieve success. They are as thrilled as we are to win this title, and we are really looking forward to celebrating with them.”

The Belvoir Annual Conference and Awards is sponsored by SDL Property Auctions and Let Alliance. The event welcomed franchisees, guests and suppliers from across the UK to celebrate achievements and help boost business growth.

Source: News from Wales

Courier business delivers further growth by launching its latest franchise

April 4, 2022

Same-day courier company, Cargo2Go, is opening a new franchise location in Doncaster as it continues to expand.

In the second half of 2021, the company recruited a record number of drivers due to increased demand.

Cargo2Go runs an extensive fleet of vans and wagons, with a strong presence across the North’s major towns and cities and the M62 corridor.

As part of its ambitious growth plans, Cargo2Go says it intends to set up further franchises across the UK.

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Jim Mosley and Ben Frechette began the first franchise back in 2011, and have since grown that to 10 territories and over £3m worth of annual revenue.

The new Doncaster franchisees are Nuzhat Noreen ul-Haq, Stenly Kupahurasa and Terrence Mutero.

Mutero has previous courier experience. Kupahurasa currently works in the NHS and will come on board full time once the business allows. Haq is leaving her current job and will be running operations full time.

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Mutero said: “We’re so excited to be part of the Cargo2Go family. It’s an exciting, fast-growing business. It’s great to be part of that success story.”

Mosley added: “It’s amazing to see the Cargo2Go brand expanding across the UK. Our franchise set-up programme gives the franchisees everything they need to build a successful franchise.

“Ben and I are confident that Cargo2go Doncaster will achieve great things in that territory.”

By Miran Rahman

Source: The Business Desk