Hairdressing franchises recognised through new awards

Two brands dominated a recent awards ceremony which recognised franchising excellence in the hairdressing industry. The Sapphires, presented by Salon Business magazine and organised by Event Solutions, were announced during an evening of glitz and glamour at London's Dorchester Hotel on 15th June.

The event saw a haul of three awards go to TONI&GUY and four gongs picked up by Saks Hair & Beauty. Toast of the night was TONI&GUY Chairman Toni Mascolo OBE (pictured above), who picked up a special Pioneer of UK Salon Franchising Award.

In its inaugural year, The Sapphires invited hairdressing franchises to nominate entries under 11 categories (six for franchise owners and five for franchisors). The categories went through a three round judging process, which was headed by The Franchise Magazine's Publisher Roy Seaman and also involved the magazine's Editor Stuart Anderson, which led to 44 finalists in the running on the night.

"We're overwhelmed by the terrific response to this brand new event," said Salon Business Editorial Director Maria Weijers. "An outstanding number of entries in every category and a packed house at The Dorchester. Clearly there was a hunger for franchising to be recognised and thanks to everyone for so enthusiastically getting involved."

Hosted by Maria and Red or Dead Founder and Designer Wayne Hemingway, the event starting with a speech by Roy who said: "The hairdressing industry is unique in every way, including its approach to franchising - something which had to be carefully considered when judging the franchisor categories in The Sapphire Awards.

"The classic Business Format Franchise concept is used in a variety of industries, including retail, estate agents, fast food, accountancy and domestic cleaning, but in the hairdressing arena franchising operates slightly differently. The judges' responsibility was to evaluate all entries and shortlist candidates offering a genuine franchise opportunity to people wishing to become franchise owners under their brand.

"The finalists are to be applauded for their outstanding commitment to professionalism in all areas of the hairdressing franchise arena, just as Salon Business magazine, and event organisers ESP, are to be applauded for their initiative of bringing salon franchising into the spotlight."

THE AWARD WINNERS IN FULL

Franchisee Awards:

Best Use of Technology, sponsored by Shortcuts Salon & Spa Software: Kelly Ly, hob salons, Loughton

Top Training Development, sponsored by NatWest: Claire Denyer, Saks Hair & Beauty, Kingshill

Best Local Marketing, sponsored by SalonGenius: Wilson Derbyshire, Saks, Northallerton

Best Franchise Salon, sponsored by Corioliss: Darren Fowler, Clipso London Front of House, sponsored by Wahl: Sheena Newlands, Francesco Group, Stafford Franchisee of the Year, sponsored by Salon Gold: Phil Smith, TONI&GUY, Salisbury

Most Effective Website, sponsored by Allianz: Haringtons, London & the South East

Top Training Scheme, sponsored by Racoon International: Saks Hair & Beauty, nationwide

Best Corporate Marketing, sponsored by L'oral Professionnel: Saks Hair & Beauty, nationwide

Best Corporate Image, sponsored by Great Lengths: Headmasters, London & the South East

Franchisor of the Year, sponsored by Clynol: TONI&GUY, nationwide

Pioneer of UK Salon Franchising Award: Mr Toni Mascolo OBE, TONI&GUY