Minster Cleaning Services was established in 1982; it has been a bfa Full Member since 1992 and was a 2016 bfa Franchisor of the Year finalist. With so much experience of franchising and the commercial cleaning market, Minster gives prospective franchisees a rock solid business model with considerable opportunities for growth. Larger branches can employ upwards of 200 people and many have achieved annual sales in excess of £1million. Average annual branch turnover is well over £800,000 and turnover for the group is over £35million.
Marketing manager, Paul Stairmand, together with 24-year-old marketing graduate, Nikki Riddle, provides the franchise network with support in winning new clients and retaining and generating increased sales from existing clients. Paul explains: “The majority of our new business is won via generic and sector- targeted direct mail, online structured branch pay-per-click campaigns, ongoing search engine optimisation and referrals.
“Satisfied, loyal clients are a valuable source of new business referrals. We use the Net Promoter Score management tool to assess client loyalty and use the feedback to fine-tune our service levels.
“We also have a dedicated system to help franchisees manage their leads and prospects and there is a full range of marketing support material available which incorporates our brand values – reliable, consistent, trustworthy, flexible, friendly and great value.”
Further support for franchisees is available through national and regional meetings and via the branch network where there is a healthy exchange of ideas and information. If ever a problem arises, there is always someone else who has had the same experience and has come up with a solution. The regional meetings take place every two years and, this year were held in Glasgow, Leeds, Winchester and Cheltenham and were attended by Paul and managing director, Mike Parker. The value of these is that franchisees are able to discuss topics of their choosing in small groups, which is not possible at the larger national meetings.
Training and support has always been crucial to the success of Minster franchisees. From day one, there is help with the transition from employment to self-employment, and established systems are in place to cover important business activities such as bookkeeping, training and the complex fields of employment law, health and safety and environmental legislation.
Minster’s exceptionally large territories give enterprising franchisees virtually unlimited scope for expansion and, as an essential business-to-business service with multi-sector appeal, office cleaning is less susceptible to fluctuations in the UK’s economy than most sectors.
As the country’s biggest and one of the most successful commercial cleaning franchises, the company offers prospective franchisees a safe and secure future whether buying a branch which is already up and running or choosing a new area.
On average, franchisees have been with Minster for 13 years and some longer serving franchisees are planning to retire in the next few years. There are currently established franchises available for resale in Dundee, Edinburgh and Liverpool 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 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.