The British Franchise Association (bfa) has announced the finalists in the 2012 bfa HSBC Franchisee of the Year Awards.

A total of 15 finalists from five regions have been chosen after much consideration from the judging panel.

The national awards aim to highlight excellence within the sector and the ongoing commitment of those franchise owners who ‘set the standard’ for best practice in the industry.

The finalists will attend an interview with the judging panel before the winners are announced at a prestigious black-tie dinner being held at the NEC in Birmingham, on Thursday 4 October 2012.

Cathryn Hayes, head of franchising, HSBC, said: “The 2012 bfa HSBC Franchisee Award entries have been truly inspirational – with individuals showing passion, innovation and business flair. Working with some of the UK’s best franchisors every day at HSBC, it is great to see these successful individuals rewarded for their determination and dedication to their profession. It is a pleasure to see entries brought to life during the judging process and 2012 has been no exception with fresh business thinking at the forefront of each franchise owner story.”


Brian Smart, Director General of the bfa, added: “Each year the sheer number of high caliber entrants from the UK never ceases to amaze me. With a multitude of sectors being represented, from global restaurant chains to local toddler football groups, the finalists have all shown a high level of integrity, entrepreneurialism and community commitment – making the next phase of judging very difficult.”

Seán Hammond, Head of Franchising at Express Newspapers, which supports the awards, said: “These awards provide us with a fantastic opportunity to see the best example of successful franchising in the UK. At Express Newspapers, we are in the business of educating our readers on the benefits of investing with a franchise network so it is very exciting to hear so many stories of success from individuals who have taken this bold step in their lives.”

In addition to the winners across the five regions, this year’s awards will include an overall winner – the Gold Winner of the awards – who will be named bfa HSBC Franchisee of the year and will receive £5,000 from HSBC. The Silver and Bronze Winners will receive £3,000 and £2,000 respectively, courtesy of HSBC. The five regional winners will each receive £500, again provided by HSBC.

The finalists are:

London/South East
Liz Dillon, Antal International (Essex)
Carl Belle, Belvoir Lettings (Essex)
Gurpreet (Gee) Bains, Driver Hire (London)
Daniel Bowyer, Dyno-Rod Plumbing and Drains (Norwich)

South West/South Wales
Robert Schuler, Barking Mad (Somerset)
Ron Mounsey, McDonald’s restaurants (Stonehouse)
Sedge Gooding, Rosemary Conley Diet and Fitness Clubs (Reading)

Midlands/North Wales
Steven Prime, Esquires Coffee Houses (Coventry)
Barbara and Ian Roberts, Merry Maids (Stafford)

North
Luke Norbury, Home Instead Senior Care (York)
Eve Kay, Jo Jingles (Cheshire)
Malcolm Lant, Signs Express (Gateshead)

Scotland/Northern Ireland
Keith Ellwood, Autosmart (Edinburgh)
Gabriel McGeown, Card Connection (County Antrim)
Andrew Gibson, McDonald’s restaurants (Glasgow)

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