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FASTSIGNS shop LFR

FASTSIGNS has unveiled more details on its UK growth strategy as it aims to double its number of franchises by 2018. The global sign and graphics specialist already has 20 franchise centres across the country and is on course to be operating in 24 locations by the end of the year. Newly released forecasts show that number reaching 30-32 during 2017, before hitting 40 by 2018.

Following the recent launch of the country’s first Co-Branded centre in Oxford North, FASTSIGNS’ UK team will be heavily focused on its franchise, Co-Brand and conversion models.

“There are very clear benefits to this approach,” commented John Davies, Managing Director of FASTSIGNS UK. “Our Co-Brand offering allows a new franchisee to effectively bolt-on FASTSIGNS’ services to their existing business. Their own operations continue as normal, but they have the added benefit of selling FASTSIGNS branded goods, as well as joining our centre network and enjoying benefits such as additional expertise, marketing support and training.

“We’re actively seeking print or photography businesses who feel their growth has plateaued. They need to have at least three members of staff, including a salesperson and production / graphic designer. The sales target for the first year is £125,000-£140,000, rising to £200,000-£250,000 in year two, so the potential for growth with this additional revenue stream is substantial. This is already proving a hugely successful model at our Oxford North centre, where we joined forces with in excess of £3.5m-turnover photography and creative design firm Ward-Hendry.”

John and his team anticipate an even split between Co-Branded centres and more traditional FASTSIGNS franchises. 2016 has already seen a notable increase in calls from people looking to explore the more traditional franchisee route and set-up a FASTSIGNS branded business from scratch.

“During the recession, the UK franchise market stood still,” added John. “Franchise owners focused on maintaining business rather than seeking new opportunities, and then focused on maintenance and inward investment. However, we are now seeing franchise owners looking to expand their portfolios once again. Now, it seems, is the time for growth and we’re well placed to offer a viable and profitable opportunity.”

As part of the growth strategy, FASTSIGNS has also revealed that it is looking to target more high-visibility locations, including major arterial roads, rather than high street stores. This reflects a shift in the business from being predominantly retail focused, to now offering a wide array of visual communications, such as external signage, banner displays, vehicle graphics, promotional items and digital advertising solutions.

FASTSIGNS currently has over 640 centres in nine countries, including US, Canada, UK, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Grand Cayman, Mexico and Australia.

For more information on FASTSIGNS’ UK franchise opportunities, visit www.fastsigns.co.uk/franchise-opportunities.