Long-term franchisee shares 14 years experience and future plans

13 Jan 2015

In 2000, Angela, having previously launched and ran a retail business with her then husband, was on the hunt for another business adventure. However, this time around, with a recent divorce behind her and two children to take care of, Angela was searching for a safer business option and franchising seemed to be just the thing she was looking for.

She certainly did her due diligence attending the Franchise Exhibition at the NEC three years in a row to obtain the information she needed to make her choice. She finally settled on an OPC greetings card franchise after meeting Brian Needham, then OPC franchisee for Mid-Wales. Brian had previously ran Angela’s local Post Office before buying his franchise which he has now just recently sold on to Mark and Sally Boulton.

With Brian’s assurances and faith in her comprehensive research, Angela raised the finance required from the divorce settlement and took the plunge.

The challenges of running an OPC franchise have been varied for Angela over the past 14 years but they are no different to those experienced by the majority of successful business owners. Covering the geography of her territory was her biggest initial challenge but this was in part, overcome by the recruitment of a merchandiser.

Of course, recruitment can also bring its own challenges but with the huge changes in retail over the past few years, Angela found that her new challenge was finding new business. Her territory had been witness to the closures of post offices and small local shops due to the recent economy woes and as a result, Angela saw a considerable reduction in the number of stores she was supplying.

However, OPC not only proactively expanded the range of products available but also used the increased product offering to attract sought after National Account groups to supply.

Angela says, “I now have a bigger range of cards in the shops that I do supply and therefore sales figures have not dropped. OPC helps in finding new business by supplying leads and marketing material and other support.” She continues, “OPC products are definitely different from the other franchises and this is what sets them apart.”

Angela’s idea of a successful franchisee is one who has sustainability, energy, a friendly and outgoing personality and the ability to be versatile in business. “You have to be the bookkeeper, the warehouse packer, the delivery driver, the sales person,” warns Angela.

Her advice to someone thinking of buying his or her first franchise would be to go for it! She added, “I have thoroughly enjoyed my 14 years as an OPC franchisee and like the flexibility of running my own business. I love my area of North Wales and have got to know a lot of lovely people and a lovely area. I am proud to own my own business and love to help retailers make a success of their business.”

Angela’s territory is currently available for resale as she plans her semi-retirement. Her husband is already semi-retired and they have plans to spend their winter months in Portugal playing golf and enjoying more time together.

Established in 1991, OPC’s franchise network has had complete UK coverage for over 20 years and is a full member of the British Franchise Association.

Some franchisees, like Angela, are now selling their existing territories as they retire or move on to new business opportunities, creating huge potential for new owners to step in! So if you would like to find out more about an OPC resale territory, please call 01932 267300 or email mail@originalposter.com.

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