James Lofthouse of the Sheffield branch became the first franchisee to reach £2 million. He bought the franchise as a going concern in 2005 when turnover was approximately £1 million; since then it has grown every year which is testimony to his management abilities and to the resilience of the Minster business model, even during an economic downturn.
James had been involved in various management roles before he joined Minster, and had run another franchise; this was heavily dependent on a small number of customers which made it vulnerable, unlike Minster, as he explains: “Office cleaning is an essential service based on repeat custom and we have a diverse customer base of around 230 contracts. This helps to protect us from the peaks and troughs experienced by so many businesses and Minster’s large territories give us enormous potential for expansion. I have built a significant, valuable business by offering a high quality, cost-effective service.”
He chose Minster Cleaning Services because it is long-established and well-respected with a proven track record for success. “I have the best of both worlds”, he says, “I run my own business and yet I am not entirely on my own. Minster’s support covers a wide range of areas including IT, accounting and marketing as well as complex areas like health and safety and employment law – this leaves franchisees free to concentrate on looking after customers and providing a first class service. The franchisee network is also very helpful – there is always someone to speak to and no matter what situation arises, one of the other franchisees can offer useful advice.”
James plans to keep the business growing by continuing to offer excellent service levels, value for money and a flexible service which is tailored to the individual needs of both existing and new clients. His achievements have also been recognised, as he was a proud a finalist in the Customer Focus Franchisee of the Year category in the prestigious annual bfa HSBC Franchise Awards 2018.