Your success is our success

When franchising your business, the relationship between yourself and your Franchise Consultant cannot be underestimated. Here, Tiffany Brooking reveals the success that entertainment franchise CeX achieved through working with FDS

In 1992 a group of gadget lovers founded a second-hand entertainment business which specialised in the buying, selling and exchanging of electronic products.

Originally known as Tottenham Court Road Computer Exchange, this business soon evolved into Complete entertainment eXchange (CeX ) and rapidly expanded – establishing 16 company-owned stores throughout London and Birmingham.

Recognising the need for more efficient and structured growth, in 2005 CeX co-founder Hugh Man identified franchising as the most suitable route of expansion.

“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,” explains Hugh.

FDS Consultants Paul Hague and Nick Williams worked closely with Hugh to identify the CeX business objectives and embark on the national and international franchise development programmes. “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 Hague adds: “Together we considered in detail how the CeX franchise would best work from both sides of franchisor and franchise owner. We then developed all the necessary franchise infrastructure elements and marketing strategies in readiness of the launch.”

Through the use of marketing initiatives and FDS media, CeX has been able to achieve its expansion objective of recruiting 100 franchise owners in five years. Not only was this objective achieved, it was exceeded.

“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.”

Once the CeX franchise was firmly established within the UK, FDS and CeX then turned their focus on entering international markets and replicating their national success.

“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 franchise owner opening in 2011, thanks to FDS helping give our franchise wide coverage in these and other international markets.”

CeX has also embarked upon expansion into India, the USA and Australia where eventually they will award franchises.

While the CeX franchise opportunity may have been launched six years ago and is now an established and experienced franchisor, FDS is still as attentive and supportive as ever to ensure the continued successful expansion of the CeX brand.

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

With the continued support and guidance of the FDS team, CeX is now a publically acclaimed entertainment and technology expert, which can boast an impressive worldwide network of over 230 stores – and growing.