Opportunities on offer at Melbourne franchising expo

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Melbourne plays host to the Franchising and Business Opportunities Expo this weekend. For anyone looking to invest in a franchise this is a great opportunity to delve deeper into the franchise sector and come face to face with franchisees and franchisors from a wide selection of systems and across a variety of industries.

And while attending the expo means visitors get to see a number of opportunities in one easy-to-manage space, there is much more to a visit than trawling the aisles.

 

Tip 1

Scan the exhibition guide and mark out the key companies you want to see

 

For starters, the expo is set out as a journey of discovery, with visitors directed to a one-way entry into the hall in the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre. First stop is the Franchise Council of Australia, the sector’s national association for franchisors and franchisees. This is the place to get answers to your questions on franchising and what you need to know before you sign up as a franchisee.

Steve Wright, executive director of the FCA, says “The upcoming Melbourne Franchising Expo should be a cracker. We had very strong attendances in the Sydney and Perth expos — and the signs are positive that the Melbourne show will pick up where Sydney and Perth left off.

“Of course, the FCA will be there to answer any questions and to run the educational sessions which give prospective franchisees the chance to talk to real life, current franchisors and franchisees in a dedicated area away from the exhibition stands. The FCA stand itself is the first stop on your franchising journey at the expo. Banking and legal advisers will be there as well — offering free tips and basic get-you-started advice.

“Melbourne’s franchising expo will coincide with the Victorian Government’s small business festival, Energise Enterprise, running through most of August. Small Business minister Louise Asher is anticipating the biggest numbers ever for this year’s Energise Enterprise, which should provide a great platform for the expo.”

Spend a few minutes in comfort watching the video clips about franchise systems before heading off around the expo.

 

Tip 2

 

Check out the seminar program and make a note of the times so you don’t miss them

There’s a valuable learning-based program of seminars that takes in business and financial advice from organisations that regularly deal with the franchising sector, including the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). But you can also hear some tales of challenges faced and difficulties overcome in the popular Bootcamp, a lively interview session with a selection of franchisees. And there’s a chance to pose your own burning question too.

Visitors can get advice from other points around the expo; the advice centre is the place to go for a free one-to-one session — it’s best to book an appointment, as they get busy. The Federal Government’s easy access, business advice website (www.business.gov.au) is represented at the expo, and staff can help with general business questions. And the ACCC also has a presence at the show, and has a handy giveaway, the Little Black Book of Scams, that highlights some of the poorer practices in business that should deter investors.

 

Tip 3

 

Take a note of how franchisors present themselves on their stands

As you go around the expo, if you’re interested in a franchise system, take time to chat to the franchisor or franchisee on the stand. Visitors who are serious about investing in a business will use the show as part of their due diligence and won’t be put off by hard questions or demands for contact details. Franchisors will follow up the expo with phone calls to see if prospective franchisees want to find out more about their business. How long the franchisor takes to get back to you will tell you something about how they run their business.

 

Tip 4

 

Stop at the Franchising magazine networking lounge

Take time out of your busy day to come and say hello to Franchising magazine. There will be refreshments on the stand, and we’re happy to chat about the franchising sector all day long.

 

Discover the opportunities

Among the exhibitors participating in the Melbourne expo in August are the following companies:

 

 

Domino’s Pizza

 

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

We are all really excited about the new store growth we are experiencing at the moment. For the last few months, we have been opening new stores every week.

Is your business a license or franchise system?

Domino’s is a franchise system, and the largest master franchisor for the Domino’s brand outside the US.

Is this a full time or additional income opportunity?

Domino’s franchises follow a full time, hands on, owner operator model, and franchisees have the opportunity to develop multi-unit systems.

Will you have franchisees on your stand to meet prospective franchisees?

We will have current franchisees at our stand for periods throughout the day to share their stories, successes and advice.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

Depending on the location and size of the franchise, the cost can range from $400,000.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

Domino’s corporate office has a strong social media presence, with over 95,000 fans on Facebook and increasing followers on Twitter. Individual stores are able to set up their own Facebook pages with assistance and monitoring from our corporate marketing team.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

The right attitude: our training and induction programs cover the rest.

 

Fastway Couriers

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

The most exciting development for us is the rapid pace at which we are embracing technology. From new productivity tools for our franchisees through to customer-facing initiatives like iPhone applications and our real time social media presence, we’re ensuring that our franchisees are ahead of the curve as the online retail sector continues to grow.

Is this a full time or additional income opportunity?

Fastway Couriers is a full time franchise system. Our franchise partners work a five day week with the weekends off.

Will you have franchisees on your stand to meet prospective franchisees?

Yes.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

The great thing about a Fastway Courier franchise is the fact that there are no ongoing fees, royalties or marketing levies. Our exclusive territories start from an investment of just $27,500 (including GST). Our franchise agreements are perpetual, which offers our franchisees the benefit of no costly renewal fees and the opportunity to grow, split and on sell their business for a capital gain. Some franchises even include a guaranteed income of $1500 (including GST) per week for 35 weeks.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

Twitter and Facebook.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

Fastway franchises are an easy to operate business, with no previous experience required. All you need to be is friendly, reliable and down-to-earth.

Hudsons Coffee is exhibiting at the Melbourne Franchising and Business Opportunities Expo.

 

Hudsons Coffee

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

Our industry leading Rewards Program that allows us to communicate with over 200,000 of our loyal customers. It acts as a platform to promote new products and special offers, and provides an added incentive for customers to choose us, over our competitors, as their coffee house of choice.

Will you have franchisees on your stand to meet prospective franchisees?

Yes. Come down and say hello and find out what it is like to become a Hudsons Coffee franchisee.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

The cost is $200,000 to $450,000, dependent on store size and whether the store is a Greenfield or existing site.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

Facebook and Twitter

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

A passion for our brand and for customer service, commitment and a strong work ethic. Previous retail, hospitality or business experience is beneficial but not essential.

 

RP Vending

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

RP Vending Systems is excited to be bringing out a new range of vending machines to the Australian marketplace. These machines will have the latest in technology making them perfect for the demands of the Australian market.

Is your business a license or franchise system?

An RP Vending Systems business is a business opportunity. Once purchased the owner has full control over the business. The owners will still have full back-up and support from RP Vending Systems.

Is this a full time or additional income opportunity?

One of the unique features of an RP Vending business is its level of flexibility. RP Vending offers a range of business packages that offer different sized businesses. If you are looking for a full-time business you may consider the complete vendor package, unless you were considering a part-time business in which case the income booster package would be more suited.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

Depending on the size of business you are after, a part-time business would cost from $40,000 to $50,000 and a full time business setup would be between $100,000 and $120,000.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

RP Vending has two Facebook pages, a twitter page and a youtube channel.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

RP Vending provides all the training to business owners so they do not need any prior education or training. However, experience in customer service roles would definitely help.

Tasti D-Lite offers healthy, natural frozen desserts. Image: everyfranchise.com

 

Tasti D-Lite

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

We are constructing our first Australian store in South Yarra.

Is your business a license or franchise system?

Franchise system. Franchise opportunities will be available from July onwards with the help of Franchise Selection.

Will you have franchisees on your stand to meet prospective franchisees?

As we are still starting up, we won’t have any franchisees on the stand, however, we will be giving away free samples of Tasti D-Lite throughout the expo.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

Between $250,000 and $400,000.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and Google Latitude offers. Tasti D-Lite has a very solid background in social media and has been recognised in Mashable’s 40 of the Best Twitter Brands, and featured in Twitter’s Business 101 Case Studies.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

We are looking for people that share in our passion for Tasti D-Lite and our core values of trust, accountability, integrity, caring, respect, dignity and enthusiasm.

 

The Franchise Shop

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

The Franchise Shop has grown to be one of only a few full service franchise consultancies in Australia and New Zealand. We do feasibility studies, franchise developments, franchise sales and franchise resales. Most consultants only do some of these things. And now we are franchising The Franchise Shop. Our first franchise is in Sydney and we are having discussions with people in other markets.

Is your business a license or franchise system?

The Franchise Shop offers a full franchise system.

Is this a full time or additional income opportunity?

This is a full time opportunity.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

The cost of each franchise varies with the size of the market and whether the prospective franchise owner wants to be a master with resale options or simply a franchise owner of our system.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

We are now using Twitter, we have started a blog, we have a regular newsletter, and use LinkedIn.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

You need exposure to the franchise sector, perhaps in a field support role, or a head office role, or as a franchise owner. Having run a business of your own in the past would be an advantage. Strong people skills, good writing practices all help too.

 

Villa & Hut Kafes

What’s the most exciting development in your business right now?

 

Villa & Hut Kafes have 21 static sites around the country, which have been a franchising success since 2005. We are now taking our award winning coffee and famous chai lattes to the streets, with the launch of Villa & Hut Kafe On Wheels.

Is your business a license or franchise system?

Villa & Hut Kafes are a proven franchise system, with numerous industry and business awards.

Is this a full time or additional income opportunity?

The nature of this franchise system allows the business to operate on a full time or part time basis.

Will you have franchisees on your stand to meet prospective franchisees?

Being a new division of our existing Villa & Hut Kafe franchise system, our launch at the Franchise Expo will be the first time we will be making franchise territories available. We have an initial limit of only 17 territories available to franchise and we expect them to sell fast.

What’s the cost of a turnkey franchise?

Fully fitted vans start at $99,950 plus GST.

What social media does your franchise engage with?

Facebook, Twitter, a blog, and our brand new interactive iphone app to help customers place orders, find us and view our menu.

What skills do you need from a franchisee?

A love of anything served hot — from a cup.

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