Broaden your horizons with FDS

CeX has supplied quality second-hand gadgets and entertainment to the public for over 20 years. Now, with a new title and nearly 200 stores across the UK, the franchise is proving more popular than ever after an enduring and successful partnerships with FDS consultants.

Originally, the firm was called Tottenham Court Road Computer Exchange, because of its central London location, but recently this name developed into Complete entertainment eXchange, to reflect the business’ changing direction.

The company may have been set up in 1992, but it was not until 2005 that co-founders, Hugh Man and Bobby Dudani, saw the potential in franchising the business to securely expand. Hugh says: “As a novice to franchising, I approached three consultants to provide guidance, before choosing Franchise Development Services (FDS), who I felt were better established to provide a full franchise package.” FDS Consultants, Paul Hague and Nick Williams, worked closely with Hugh and Bobby to agree on and identify business targets, and begin working towards establishing CeX as one of the most popular franchise opportunities in the UK.

“Not all businesses have what it takes to successfully franchise,” says Nick. “However, with an already proven business model, which was illustrated by its company-owned stores, attractive turnover and resilient business concept, we knew CeX would be perfect for franchising.” Paul adds: “Together we considered in detail how the CeX franchise would work best from both sides; franchisor and franchise owner. We then developed all the necessary franchise infrastructure elements and marketing strategies ready for the launch.”

Through creative marketing with FDS media and the guidance of Paul and Nick, CeX was able to exceed its targets and recruit over 100 franchise owners in just five years. “The results of our partnership with FDS speak for themselves,” says CeX Senior Franchise Manager, Frank Orchard. “FDS has played an integral role in CeX’s recruitment strategy from the formative days when we launched our business format franchise in 2006. We work closely with FDS to continually review our recruitment and PR tactics and ensure quality leads come to the fore from a strong pipeline of discerning prospects.”

Eager to maintain the business’ expansion, FDS and CeX then began to look overseas to gain franchise investors in international markets.

“In the last few years, we have supported CeX into awarding their Ireland franchise and the business is now beginning to develop in the Irish market,” reveals Nick. “Simultaneously, our FDS office in Spain is working closely with the CeX Spanish representative to market and develop the franchise operation of the concept.” Frank adds: “We have seen our success expand into Europe with our first Spanish franchised store opening in 2011, thanks to FDS helping give our franchise wide coverage in these and other relevant international markets.” The successful expansion of CeX through franchising is evidenced by the international markets that the business has managed to penetrate. Countries including India, the US and Australia now have a number of CeX branches. Now that the CeX brand has established itself as one of the most prominent franchisors in the UK, FDS’s support continues to provide assistance to the expansion process of the company.

“Over the last six years we have developed a deep relationship with CeX at every level,” continues Nick. “Working closely with their management team with annual analysis and intermediate telephone and email briefs and updates throughout, supported by their Franchise Manager.”

When Hugh and Bobby established Tottenham Court Road Computer Exchange back in 1992, they could scarcely imagine that in just 21 years they would be the founders of an international brand. However with the guidance and continued support of FDS consultants, the expansion of Complete entertainment eXchange shows no sign of slowing down.