Excellence in franchising The FASA Awards for Excellence in Franchising, held annually, celebrate not only the top achievers in the industry, but have become the industry’s highest accolade and the vehicle through which the Franchise Association of Southern Africa shows the world how successful franchising is as a business format. At the Awards for Excellence in Franchising, held as the culmination of Franchise Week, which saw the industry get together to attend a Franchise Convention and incorporating the International Franchise Expo, close to 400 franchisors and franchisees gathered at the week-end to celebrate FASA’s 30th anniversary as the industry’s representative body. Newly elected Chairman of FASA Tumi Sengoara toasted the success of franchising in South Africa, which has grown to become one of the most important business sectors contributing 12,57% to GDP, with close to 30 000 franchised outlets in over 17 business sectors employing over half a million people. “Despite the economic downturn franchising continues to be a dominant business format as far as SME development is concerned. Across the globe small business is recognised as the safety net of any economy and franchising is proving to be quite resilient even in this economic climate.” The categories honoured at the FASA Awards include: FRANCHISOR OF THE YEAR Pick n Pay scoops Franchisor of the Year – the Franchise Association of Southern Africa’s highest honour This most prestigious award, which is sponsored this year by FNB, celebrates the success of the franchisor who has made a significant impact in the marketplace and who has, through effective business management and marketing, achieved outstanding financial results and a significant growth in his sector. Franchisor of the Year, FASA’s most prestigious award, which was sponsored by First National Bank, celebrates the success of the franchisor who has made a significant impact in the marketplace and who has, through effective business management and marketing, achieved outstanding financial results and a significant growth in his sector. Winning this prestigious award was Pick n Pay whose franchise division has been a proud example of how franchising can be both ethical and profitable. The success story of Pick n Pay is legendary especially the equitable way they have managed to operate a successful corporate business and grow a strong and profitable franchise division. The passion that everyone within the group – from the Chairman down – has for their franchisees’ success is reflected in the success of their 249 franchise stores. According to Neal Quirk, Franchise Director of Pick n Pay, “We at Pick n Pay live our values and principles in all dealings with the various role-players. Our franchisees are well selected, trained, supported and provided with a successful model. Success for us and our franchisees is the result.” A successful Franchise Academy trains, develops and empowers previously disadvantaged people with the objective of developing franchisees. It leads the field in entrepreneurial empowerment with its Family stores targeted at growing black entrepreneurs. The company’s Franchise Academy enrolls historically disadvantaged individuals, including former employees, who, on completion of training, get to be shareholders in their stores. In addition, Pick n Pay has a twinning programme in place where graduates are partnered with more experienced traders to gain experience and minimise the risk of failure. Pick n Pay continues to expand this successful format, with plans to open around 40 new Family stores, including Score conversions. The runners-up in the Franchisor of the Year category were: NWJ Quality Jewellers NWJ prides itself in being the innovators of jewellery franchising in South Africa. They have successfully grown the brand, through the franchise model, and are celebrating 25 years of thriving retailing with nearly 80 stores throughout South Africa. With its own manufacturing arm, NWJ is able to be ‘first to market’ with new products and trends offering their customers quality, value and choice. And the best thing about NWJ Jewellers in these trying times – their merchandise does not deteriorate, can be recycled if necessary and their stock always appreciates in value. Postnet Started fourteen years ago, Postnet today is a nationwide chain of 226 individually owned business operators providing a range of relevant business solutions – its most recent being the first retail channel partner to Neotel, South Africa’s new telecommunications operator. Through innovative product offerings that have opened up new revenue streams for franchisees Postnet SA is continually reinventing itself, never losing sight of the customer. Maxi’s Restaurant Maxi’s is one of the food franchise success stories – that of a long-standing family restaurant franchise that was taken to new heights by the dynamic Taste Holdings group. In the space of a year, Maxi’s acquired six BJ’s sites in Caltex service forecourts on national routes. It is also the proud brand that is housed in The M1 Bridge in Midrand and continues to show exponential growth. FRANCHISEE OF THE YEAR This award, sponsored this year by Absa, honours the franchisee’s success in running his own business and contributing to the overall success of their franchisor. With close to 30 000 franchisees in South Africa, they form the backbone of the franchising sector. Captain DoRego’s, Bloemfontein is crowned Franchisee of the Year Johnny da Silva and Carlos Nunes have successfully developed a total of eight outlets in the Bloemfontein area serving around 102 000 people per month. Key to their success are strict control systems and cost effective buying on the one hand with effective marketing combined with extensive service to the community on the other. According to co-owner Johnny da Silva, adhering to the franchise methods of operation is crucial to success. “Adding value through training,” says da Silva “is also important. We realise that our staff are crucial to the business and therefore equip them with the skills necessary to not only add value to the brand, but for their own personal growth. After all, if a person feels successful, they will have the confidence to excel in life.” All the eight Captain DoRego’s outlets in Bloemfontein get involved in numerous community projects and events, from sponsoring charity events to getting involved in cleaning their city, from school and university sports events to feeding the hungry. This gives diverse meaning to their motto of ‘When people are hungry they need to think of Captain DoRego’s. The runners-up in the Franchisee of the Year category were: Western and Northern Cape Captain DoRego’s, Kimberley, Northern Cape The two franchise partners, Robin Brown and Tony Barra have made Captain DoRego’s a household name in Kimberley with not one but four successful stores. They have been solely responsible for developing the brand and have become respected businessmen in the region. Their motto and secret to success is “DON’T WORK HARDER, WORK SMARTER” and they’ve put in place rules and regulations that result in more efficient and consistent productivity. Eastern and Southern Cape Caren Mostert of Vodacare, George Caren was one of the first entrepreneurs who took up a franchise opportunity when the cellular boom started in 1996 by opening a Vodashop in Mossel Bay and she has never looked back! Today Caren runs several Vodacom and Vodacare outlets throughout the region through a combination of entrepreneurial flair and a commitment to following the franchise system. Gauteng and other provinces Gary Jackson of Woolworths, Summit Road, Bryanston Gary Jackson is living proof that once a franchisee takes over a former corporate store, there is no stopping the growth. Since buying the corporate store four years ago, his Woolworths store in Bryanston has shown over four times the sales that the store did as a corporate. This represents a 330% increase over the four years and has outperformed all other food stores in the group on sales, waste and control and customer complaint minimisation. FRANCHISOR – LEADING DEVELOPER OF EMERGING ENTREPRENEURS This category, sponsored by The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), focuses on the need to empower the small business sector and encourages the franchise ethic in our emerging markets. Winner Captain DoRego’s forges ahead with empowerment plans Captain DoRego’s, with its 36 vibrant new look stores situated in high traffic areas is fast becoming the fast food of choice for the thousands of mostly black customers who flock to buy from their wide variety of food items ranging from chicken, fish and chips, burgers and sandwiches. As the black community strongly associates with the brand, it is attracting emerging entrepreneurs as franchisees who are well known and respected in their communities. According to Gerald Brown, Managing Director of Captain DoRego’s, the group is making strong inroads into the emerging market. “We are committed to empower and promote financial independence in the communities we serve – whether it be through job creation, the development of entrepreneurial skills and opportunities for self employment. As we expand into more and more areas, we identify the potential in the market and develop the entrepreneurial skills of potential franchisees through mentor driven training and strong financial and operations support.” Captain DoRego’s community involvement is also fundamental to the success of its stores, with each outlet undertaking numerous social responsibility initiatives – from supplying food to old age homes, street kid shelters to sponsoring local soccer and other sporting teams. The runners-up in this category were: Hot Dog Café Hot Dog Café pride themselves in being one of the few franchise companies committed to developing entrepreneurial skills amongst the youth by selecting, training, mentoring and funding young black South Africans. To support the success of these cadets Hot Dog Café has developed a range of franchise options – from the cart concept outside busy commercial centres, dedicated counters inside BP South Africa petrol stations and forecourts, the traditional E-diner and a new, more affordable prototype of the E-diner. Butterfield Butterfield established its brand more than 13 years ago and continues to set the standard in the retail bakery industry with over 100 franchised bakeries. With more than a 50% BEE component Butterfield is in the forefront in developing emerging entrepreneurs – whether it be franchisees or through their institutional bakeries run by the community for the community. NEWCOMER FRANCHISOR OF THE YEAR This category, sponsored by FASA, honours the innovative entrepreneurship of newcomers to FASA who may have that next-new-concept that is going to take the world by storm! Although this category has, in the 19 years that the FASA Awards have been held, been well-represented, this year there was only one entry. The finalist and winner in this category was: Winner Placécol is a leader in the Franchise Beauty sector Placécol is unique in South Africa in that it offers potential franchisees a beauty centre franchise in the very lucrative health and beauty market segment. Its 63 stores provide a full range of body care treatments, skin care, beauty and nail services as well as retail products. Placécol Skin Care Clinic has been supplying exclusive skin care products since the 1980s. When the company first started supplying the South African skin care market this was done through selected pharmacies where Placécol’s beauty therapy services were offered by trained, mobile therapists in mini-salons situated within these pharmacies. News of the effectiveness of the treatments soon created excitement in the market which attracted the attention of Edgars. This resulted in Placécol being invited to be a supplier to the Edgars Group, and by December 2005, the Placécol Skin Care concept was available in 85 outlets in the Edgars Group. According to Corne Nel, General Manager of Placécol, the next step was to look at opening its own Beauty Centres specialising in the Soft Laser Treatment and the retailing of its products. “By February 2008 the company had set up 52 Placécol Beauty Centre salons and besides the product availability in Edgars and Foschini, the company continues to offer the products and services through 250 selected pharmacies.” The growth of multiple ownership is testament to a successful franchise formula and Placécol also has an empowerment programme that assists Beauty Centre Managers of Corporate stores to own their own stores through a joint venture initiative. BRAND BUILDER OF THE YEAR Sponsored by Old Mutual, this award honours those companies who have, through advertising, promotional campaigns and consumer awareness, taken their brands to new heights. Vodacom 4U wins Brand Builder with its trendy, youthful campaign Vodacom 4U’s “Anywhere, Anytime Campaign”, with its cheeky and sexy ‘double entendre’ play on being able to connect and do it ‘anywhere . . . anytime’ was aimed at young adults who wanted a sense of control and connectedness over their lifestyle, future and social lives. According to Farid Bhyat, Training and Operations Specialist at Vodacom 4U, the objective of the campaign was to sell the trustworthy Vodacom products and handsets while being a little daring and playful. “It was important that all aspects of the campaign were simple to understand, youthful and premium with a strong sense of style and design, very graphic and colourful. The intention was to position the stores in order to cater for the young adult/youth minded segment, predominantly 16 to 24. They would act as an energiser sub-brand which would bring more funky, spunky attitude to the patriarchial, leadership brand.” With more and more of the young, adult target market becoming just as comfortable within their ‘electronic’ selves as they are in their physical selves, Vodacom 4U aimed to bring together all these mediums of connection, information and entertainment into the Vodacom 4U strategy – resulting in the ownership of engagement spaces. The runners-up in this category were . . . Postnet Whilst Postnet has become a household name as retail business service centres, the successful launch of their sub brand Postnet Courier positioned them as the courier of choice for the SME, home business, individual and corporate business market. The marketing and brand initiatives included redeveloping all internal and external branding, radio, television and print campaigns and a community service initiative with Rotary International and the SABC to donate a million books to under-privileged schools, libraries and communities. Maxi’s Since being taken over by Taste Holdings in 2005, Maxi’s has grown from 28 outlets to 60 outlets and has been cleverly repositioned and revamped as a trendy quick service restaurant for the whole family. Besides the launch of new menus, new uniforms, new signage and new national promotions, radio and TV campaigns and internal brand campaigns, Maxi’s has captured the public’s attention with its Recipe for Success, its more than just a meal by line and its “let’s get cooking” campaign.
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