Franchise Owners chart 27 per cent growth

Card Connection franchise owners Jason Hook and Vanessa Culliford have reported 27 per cent growth in sales for their last six months over the same period last year. The couple, who operate their greeting card franchise in Canterbury and Dover, have been with the Card Connection franchise network for two years.

"In the past six months Jason and Vanessa have been focused on growing their business and have started to work with an additional 53 retail sites," said Card Connection Franchise & Sales Director Andrew Cutler (pictured, above right, with Vanessa (C) and Jason (R)). "This increases their portfolio of Card Connection retail customers to well over 200 stores and as a result, they have seen a significant uplift in sales figures."

Ex-policeman Jason put their success down to 'hard work and a focus on expanding the business through new retail customers.' He continued: "Our target is to get at least one new retailer to stock our Card Connection greeting cards each week and by calling on outlets, from farm shops to florists - in addition to larger retail stores - we are easily achieving this.

"Interestingly, we are not seeing the effects of the recession. Our sales figures are well up on last year and we have been able to improve our profit margins by stocking more premium product.

"The future looks bright and within the next 12 months we are aiming to employ an additional merchandiser and buy a new van to manage the growth of the business."

Vanessa, who previously worked as a freelance events and sales manager, added: "We always aim to provide excellent personalised customer service throughout our 235 customers. We are always on call and tailor our displays and diary to meet the needs of each shop - the customer always comes first. We have gained a great deal of extra space within existing outlets simply by being reliable and friendly."

Card Connection has completed its UK and Irish franchise owner networks, but some opportunities are still available via established territories becoming available for re-sale. The company is seeking individuals with some management experience and who are prepared to employ a small team, operate a warehouse and have several liveried vans on the road.