There's more to franchising than bricks-and-mortar stores [part one]

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A number of franchised brands are embracing new and unique models in an effort to differentiate themselves from their competitors, and in most cases they offer many benefits for the franchisee.

Here, we take a look at five different models that are unlike traditional bricks-and-mortar stores. 

The shipping container store

The Coffee Club launched its shipping container store model at Brisbane airport in June last year, and there are currently three operating on the premises.   

While the pilot project is still under review and not franchised as yet, The Coffee Club’s general manager, Arif Khan says: “We expect it to be a versatile option for the future.

“We continually look to new and innovative ways to fit our stores into new locations and markets,” he adds.

The benefits

Khan explains if the model goes ahead the potential benefits for franchisees could include:

  • Lower cost – more affordable than the brand’s cafe or kiosk model.
  • Flexibility – they can operate as satellite stores as is the case at Brisbane airport.
  • Business growth – existing franchisees could add the concept to their portfolio by making use of the resources available to them at the store/s they already own. For example, they could use the kitchen facilities of their fully-functional store to prepare products for the shipping container store.

The mobile beverage business

Mobile beverage catering franchise, Kubarz is the only business of its type in Australia. “We specialise in bringing bespoke corporate and social events to clients throughout NSW, Queensland and Victoria,” says director Drew Davies.

The benefits

Davies associates the mobile model with a number of benefits:   

  • Franchisees work for themselves, yet they become part of a team
  • Flexibility – franchisees choose the hours they work
  • Large territories, less competition – Kubarz only ever wants to be a small, niche operation
  • Customised head office support by virtue of its small operation
  • Variety – franchisees have the opportunity to service a range of different events in various different locations

The food truck

In September last year coffee chain, Hudsons launched its first food truck in the form of a 1970s Citroen H Van. The model isn’t franchised yet; however there are plans to do so in the near feature.

“We wanted something that was different to the norm – we are not traditionally in shopping centres or malls, and when we were looking at that path for the business we didn’t want to go down the stock standard kiosk model, we wanted something that was fun and funky and had that ‘wow’ factor,” says managing director, Adam Summerville.

The benefits

Affordability and flexibility underline the new model, Summerville explains:

  • It is 33 percent cheaper than traditional Hudsons stores – a food truck costs around $200,000 as opposed to $300,000
  • Adaptable – the food truck can operate on a footprint as small as 10 square metres
  • It is fully self-contained except for power
  • It offers both of the companies coffee blends
  • It stands out from traditional kiosk-style businesses by virtue of its eye-catching design
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