"This business is ideal in a recession"

With a turnover target of half a million pounds for their first year, Cash Generator's new franchise owners Andy and Paul Tolhurst have hit the ground running

Launching a Cash Generator business during the economic downturn was the "perfect" time for brothers Andy and Paul Tolhurst. "Paul was a freelance gardener and I worked in finance in the City," recalls Andy. "I was fed up with the commute and I had wanted to run my own business for a long time, so we began looking into franchising.

"Paul and I decided to go into business together because we had talked about it a lot and we trust each other, which is vital in business. We both decided on franchising as we felt it would provide us with a greater chance of success than setting up a business on our own.

"We launched our Hastings-based Cash Generator store in October 2009. Launching during the economic downturn did not worry us because this business is ideal in a recession, as people can sell their second hand goods while buying the latest gadgets at a good price. Cash Generator also appealed to us because we like the management team, it has a good track record and it is a British company."

To ensure that Andy and Paul were fully prepared for the running of their business they received thorough training from Cash Generator. "We had comprehensive training at both the Cash Generator head office and through hands-on training at other stores," Andy explains. "The training was excellent and really prepared us for the opening of our store.

"In addition we have had excellent support. There is always someone on the end of the phone when we need help or advice. As well as this two head office staff came to our store for the first two weeks of operating to help us with promoting the store and running the business."

Despite the fact that they have only been trading for a few months Andy and Paul's business is already on target to reach its first year turnover goal of £500,000. Both Paul and Andy are hands-on with their business and they have six full time staff to help with the running of their store.

Due to his background in finance Andy does the administration side on his own. "I really enjoy being my own boss," he reveals. "I like buying and selling, it is an exciting concept for retail and like working in an 'Aladdin's cave'. We do not know what we are going to have come into the store next so every day is different, which keeps it most interesting."

Keen to see their business grow Paul and Andy are looking to own and operate multiple stores in the future, Andy comments: "We aim to have two to three stores in the long term and we want to launch our second store in the next 12 months."

Interview by Derin Ibrahim