In many ways, 2016 was a remarkable year for us all. It was quite a year for Minster Cleaning Services too. In January, Nick Barber, franchisee for Northamptonshire and Bedfordshire, was named Minster Franchisee of the Year for the third time. The award is based on performance criteria including sales, new business acquisition and customer retention. Nick, who is celebrating 20 years in the business, was also a B2B bfa Franchisee of the Year finalist in 2014.
The bfa awards are the most prestigious in the franchise sector and recognise the UK’s most exceptional franchisees and franchise companies. Minster was a 2016 bfa HSBC Franchisor of the Year finalist and franchisee Kevin Lawley won the 2016 bfa HSBC Franchisee of the Year award (B2B category). In just five years, Kevin has more than trebled turnover at his Norfolk & Suffolk branch from £420,000 to £1.4million. His business now has 170 contracts and 180 employees.
Like Kevin, many Minster franchisees have achieved annual sales in excess of £1million but James Lofthouse of the Sheffield branch went one better by becoming the first to reach £2million. He bought the franchise as a going concern in 2005; since then it has grown significantly, which is testimony to his management abilities and to the resilience of the Minster business model, even during an economic downturn.
Damon Brown, the new franchisee for Minster’s Bristol branch, got off to a flying start – in his first few months he has won new contracts as well as adding extra business from existing clients. Damon, following a career in international and UK finance with Lloyds Banking Group, bought the branch, which was established in 1993, after considering various options including a number of other franchise opportunities.
South African husband-and-wife team, Paul and Kirsten Dunn also took advantage of a resale, travelling 6,000 miles from Johannesburg to take over Minster’s Edinburgh branch, which is one of the company's longest-running and most successful franchises.
Managing director, Mike Parker says that 2017 also looks like being a good year for Minster: “We have a very strong network and our franchisees are all excellent people-managers which is key to a management franchise like ours. Because we provide an essential service to organisations of all types and have such large, exclusive territories, the potential is virtually unlimited.”
Minster was established in 1982 and has been a bfa Full Member since 1992. With annual turnover for the group reaching well over £35million, it is one of the country’s most successful franchises and a leading force in office cleaning. Whether prospective franchisees go for a resale or choose a new area, the company offers a safe and secure future. Average annual branch turnover is now well over £800,000.
On average, franchisees have been with Minster for 13 years and some longer-serving franchisees are planning to retire in the next few years. Most of Minster's recent franchisees have joined through the purchase of an established branch and there is currently a resale opportunity in Derbyshire at a fee of £10,000 plus vat in addition to the purchase price of the business.
New franchise opportunities include Cambridge, Doncaster, Durham, Leicester, London, Middlesex, Guildford, Peterborough and Swansea. Initial start-up cost is £28,225 plus vat which covers licence, training, computer 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.