‘My Franchise Journey’, With Nikki Geddes

When it comes to franchising, growth is key. If you’re an established franchisor, or if you’re considering franchising your business, then you need to be asking yourself: how could I grow my franchise? We recently spoke to Nikki Geddes, Founder and Franchisor at Kiddy Cook. She opened up about her career in franchising, the challenges she’s overcome, and offered valuable advice for those starting out.

“The key to a successful franchise, is successful franchisees”

“Without successful franchisees, no franchise system will last,” Nikki said. “Initially, I made the mistake of bringing on board anybody that was willing to pay my fee. I didn’t take the time to see if they were right for me and the Kiddy Cook brand. As an emerging franchise, I awarded franchisees to anyone that asked for one in an effort to grow my business. Some of those franchisees proved unqualified to run a Kiddy Cook franchise. Therefore, it’s vitally important to take the time to recruit the right individuals for you and your brand.”

“With two young children to look after, I resigned from my marketing job and relocated from London to the North West; money was tight. So, in order to keep costs to a minimum, I tried to do everything myself without having a real understanding of how to franchise my business,” Nikki acknowledged. “This meant that, in the long run, I wasted a lot of money. Furthermore, my business model was not as robust as it should’ve been. In hindsight, I wish I’d spent the time and money to talk to a consultant right from the start!”

“Another difficulty was building a ‘solid infrastructure’. I tried to grow my franchise before I had my systems and processes completely figured out. That meant that I couldn’t provide the full support that my franchisees needed. Systems, procedures and support from you, the franchisor, will form the backbone of your franchise. I soon came to realise that these issues should have been higher on my priority list!”

Nikki’s ‘top tips’ for starting a franchise

Franchising allowed me to expand my business without a big financial outlay. Here are my ‘top tips’ for franchising your company.

1. Assess yourself.

You might enjoy, for instance, cooking with children, but can you market your business; sell your services; complete your accounts? Your success is dependent on how well (and how hard) you work on your business, not just in your business.

2. Consider the costs.

This includes both upfront and ongoing payments. Remember, setting up a business always takes longer, and costs more, than you might think!

3. Do your due diligence.

Consider what it takes to run and maintain a successful business. Check out your competition, and make sure you speak to other franchisors and business owners. You need to be asking:

  • If they were starting today, knowing what they know now, what would they do differently?
  • What are the key success factors they’ve found?
  • What were some of their biggest challenges, and how have they overcome them?
  • How long did it take for them to start making a profit?
Whilst it’s important to learn from your own mistakes, it’s definitely less painful to learn from others’!

4. Start with your end game.

You should always have your long term goals in mind, right from the very beginning. Don’t limit your plans and procedures to that of a small franchise. If you get it right from the outset, you’ll have the potential to grow exponentially.

5. You don’t have to go it alone!

Using a qualified franchise consultant, or mentor, is a great step to take. They can help establish a solid strategy, which could become the foundation you need for your business to thrive.

For more guidance on franchising your business, check out Danbro’s ‘5 top tips’, here.

‘Inspiring young people to have fun with food’

Kiddy Cook was established in Greater Manchester back in 2005. The company inspires children and young people to have fun with food, helping them make informed choices towards a healthy lifestyle.

Kiddy Cook now have a network of 14 franchisees (as per Feb 2019). They run parties, weekend sessions, school workshops, and children’s cookery theatres at food festivals nationwide.


Specialist Franchise Accountants

Are your franchisees pulling in different directions, following different advice from different accountants? If the answer is yes, it could be hindering your opportunity for growth, creating problems where there needn’t be, and doing significant damage to your profits.

When it comes to franchise accountancy, consistency is key. Your franchisees need to be working towards a common goal, with a service provider who can handle the demands of a national network.

Here at Danbro, we’ll understand, deliver and grow together. We’re an award-winning firm of chartered accountants and business advisors, specialising in the franchise sector. We provide reliable, industry leading Management Information to franchise networks across the UK. This includes providing coaching, reporting, feedback, and benchmarking analysis, to help businesses like yours achieve their absolute potential.

We also offer high-quality training on everything from taxes and accounts to specialist programmes and software. You’ll be assigned a personal accountant, someone who’ll take the time to understand your business. They’ll help you measure performance levels, and share best practices across your network. Our industry expertise and outstanding track record highlights our ability to improve results and drive revenue.

Click here to find out how Danbro can fast-track your franchise.

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