'For yourself, not by yourself'... I sold my business to buy a franchise

Being in business on your own can be lonely. That's why Kelvin Bennett from Wirral sold his 12-strong chain of coffee shops in favour of becoming a franchisee with cleaning products distribution franchise Chemex.

'I wanted to be part of something larger, but still as my own boss,' he explains. 'Chemex is a good brand with proven systems, a good product base and low overheads. I get great backup from the other franchisees and Chemex has been very helpful and supportive.
There's always someone available to answer questions including a chemist, Business Development Manager...even the Chairman.'

Being out and about in a van, knocking on doors and securing contracts appears to be ideal for Kelvin. 'I haven't worn a watch since launching the business and am more relaxed,' he laughs. 'I really enjoy meeting new people and seeing different places.'

In the 15 months that Kelvin has been a franchisee, he has focused his efforts on developing lasting relationships with big spend customers. He currently has 85 and a £6,000 monthly turnover, which he anticipates increasing to £10,000 plus over the next 15 months.

'Chemex has delivered everything that it said it would,' Kelvin adds. 'Having been in catering I know that we offer quality products and a tremendous service.'

Commenting on the recent re-branding exercise by Chemex, including a new logo and van livery, Kelvin says: 'In the past six weeks since re-branding my van to the new corporate style, my business has received a real boost. Many new customers have contacted me having seen the van.'