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A Family Affair

Since taking over the Dorset franchise of Minster Cleaning Services in July 2011, 25 year old business studies graduate, Jenny Campbell, has grown turnover at the branch by a remarkable 31% and the number of staff has increased from 43 to 70.

Explaining her success, Jenny said: "We're focusing on providing the very highest possible levels of customer service; we've recruited new supervisors and upgraded the IT systems. Like all Minster territories, the branch covers a large geographical area – from Bridport to the New Forest and as far north as Andover and Salisbury – so there is still plenty of scope for expansion."

Jenny was well aware of how successful and profitable a Minster franchise could be; the Dorset branch had been operational since 1996 when she took over and her parents, Chris and Liz Campbell, had run the neighbouring Hampshire branch for 16 years.

Minster Managing Director, Mike Parker is delighted with the progress that Jenny has made in such a short time: "It's great to see young, ambitious franchisees coming into the business and showing just what can be done; Jenny plans to double the turnover of the Dorset branch within five years and looks to be easily on course to achieve this. She has the ideal background with a business studies degree and management experience with Enterprise Rentacar; as a management franchise which can be employ as many as 200 people, Minster franchisees need to have people-management ability, commercial awareness and resilience."

Mike adds "On our part, we help them to build a thriving business by providing a comprehensive range of support services to take care of the main day-to-day business activities including IT, accounts, marketing and training, as well as providing professional advice on employment law, health and safety and environmental legislation.

"On average, franchisees have been with us for 11 years and they are all building valuable, saleable assets which they can sell whenever they wish; we help them to get the very best possible return on their investment which means we must ensure that they structure their businesses accordingly. From a prospective franchisee's point of view, a resale has the advantages of cash flow, an existing customer base and staff; it can also provide evidence of what can be achieved and how the business is likely to perform in varying market conditions."

Office cleaning is an essential commercial service for which there is a demand whatever the economic climate and, as Minster attracts clients from a broad range of sectors, franchisees are well protected during more difficult trading times. Key Note estimated the annual UK contract cleaning market at £6.42bn in 2010 and predicts that it will reach £7.13bn by 2015.

Minster Cleaning Services was established in 1982 and is a leading force in office and commercial cleaning. It has been a bfa Full Member since 1992; annual turnover is £30 million and average sales per branch are over £700,000 making it one of the UK's most successful franchise networks.

New franchise opportunities include Cambridge, Durham, Leicester, London, Middlesex, Guildford, Peterborough and Swansea.

Initial start up cost is £28,225 + VAT which covers licence, training, computer software and hardware, stationery, machinery, equipment and materials. In addition, between £40,000 and £60,000 working capital will be needed – finance is available from leading banks subject to status. Also, there may be established franchises available for resale from time to time.

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