Name: Matt Scott
Franchise: North West Kent and South East London
Date launched the franchise: 1st June 2005
I am, Married to Mary with twin daughters. Prior to buying the Franchise I worked For Couraqes Brewery in Sales for twenty years.
I chose the franchise route as I wanted to gain the advantages of being able to work with an established successful business model and the back-up provided by the Franchise Support Team.
I chose a Signs Express Franchise as I had been involved in buying signs for the Brewery and I could see the growth opportunity in the sign industry, businesses always need signs and as virtually every sign is different it is an industry that needs a bespoke personal service.
After 14 years of building up the business to where it is now, I have decided to sell due to my wish to retire. Knowing my business is well structured, has good processes/procedures in place and has a strong customer base I feel confident any new owner coming in will do so with the ability to hit the ground running and continue its steady growth.
Over the years we have established a fantastic customer base, so much so that 85% of our business is from regular and loyal customers.
We have a great team, with an abundance of experience who have been with the business for several years, and who know our regular customers very well. We’ve also introduced a trainee Sign Maker with a view to the future growth of the business.
A new franchisee would gain support from the Franchise Support centre, the existing team and I would spend time with the new franchisee, and I am always available to offer support where required.
Our computer records on all customers are comprehensive and we keep complete records of all customers and jobs. We have records of all customer artwork going back to 2005.
Buying a resale means there is already an established customer database, the team know the customers and know their business. Apart from national suppliers we have built up a network of local suppliers who know our business and know our requirements.
We are active members of Business Network International and are well known throughout the local network, as the sign makers to recommend. It also gives us access to businesses across the spectrum whose services we may require.
No day is exactly the same but in general I start at 8am to prepare the work schedule for the day. At 8.30am the team start, and we have a production meeting, where the days jobs are discussed, and tasks allocated. The team commence their tasks in production, fitting, producing quotes, drawing up artwork and dealing with any callers.
I review emails and contact customers to follow up quotes, arrange visits and surveys or send out new quotations.
I then go out on customer visits throughout the day. These can be local, in Central London or in Kent.
At lunchtime we review our progress with the day’s work, if necessary, alterations are made to meet customer requirements.
Throughout the afternoon more customer visits or telephone calls to customers.
Becoming a Franchisee has allowed me to build up a business that has given me satisfaction and financial security which was exactly what I wanted to achieve when taking on this venture all those years ago.
The best piece of advice I could offer would be to ensure you look for a franchise that offers longevity and scalability. The signs industry is a great example of this as businesses always want or need signs and graphics. As every business is different, they will require an individual and bespoke service which Signs Express can deliver.
A successful franchisee will be able to offer a great customer service, will have a desire to succeed along with possessing good business acumen.
Listen to what Signs Express advises you to do as they have produced a successful business model that will help you to achieve your goals being a new franchisee.
Martin Geddes-Smith is the new owner of the existing Signs Express business in Telford.
At 29 Janiv Patel is one of the youngest franchisees in the award winning Signs Express Network.
Ray Allenby and Jane Wiles have recently taken over the long established Signs Express business in Cosham, Portsmouth.