A Preston-based specialist in the design, supply and installation of maintenance-free decking and fencing is setting its sights on nationwide expansion after recording a 33% rise in sales.
Lakeland Verandahs, which was founded in 2008 by industry specialist Russell Milburn, has tapped into the growing desire from homeowners to make the most of their outside spaces by posting £4m of orders over the last twelve months – a £1m rise.
The company has now launched a new franchise offer to help it increase its geographic coverage to all parts of the UK and Ireland, with four territories already signed up and beginning to trade
These include representatives in East Anglia, Northern Ireland, Northern Scotland and West Mercia, with seven more areas currently in final negotiations.
“Lockdowns have seen people spend more time in their gardens and this has definitely led to greater investment in outside spaces and, in particular, our uPVC decking solutions,” explained Russell.
“The growth in the North West made us think about how we could take the Lakeland Verandahs’ brand into more areas and the fastest way we can do this is through a franchise model that gives potential entrepreneurs all the tools and support they need to go from a start-up to a £1.2m business in just three years.”
He continued: “Potential franchisees will get a dedicated territory to trade in, use of an established brand, a full tool package, comprehensive training, immediate access to consumer finance and the opportunity to tap into hugely successful lead generation capabilities. We’ll even secure a liveried van and pay the deposit to get the individual started.
“In total, we’re looking for 35 to 40 different operations. With four up and running and seven close to completion, we’re six months ahead of schedule.”
Lakeland Verandahs’ decking, fencing and balustrades are incredibly low maintenance and, as a result, its systems are durable, non-slip, safe and come with a 10-year warranty.
Primarily aimed at the residential marketplace, the modern, natural look uPVC decking enhances any garden or patio area, with clients able to customise the design to make the most of their outdoor space.
This includes contemporary and traditional solutions, nine different colours and a host of wood-effect imprints.
“We’ve spent a lot of time capturing what makes our business special and transferring it into the franchise model,” added Greg Kane, Director of Lakeland Verandahs Franchising and owner of Wakefield-based Conservatory Outlet.
“Everyone who signs up will get an extensive induction and training sessions on how to install the product at our HQ in Preston and then access to dedicated training and sales specialists for technical questions, lead generation and day-to-day support.
“You don’t need to be an industry specialist either…we just want an individual who wants to achieve and wants the freedom to be their own boss.”
He concluded: “We initially projected sales of £1.2m for each franchise holder by year three, but, the way the digital lead generation is going, we believe this could be achieved within the first twelve months. That’s a really good business opportunity.”
By Russ Cockburn