Discover the secret of franchise success with London House

Financial and commercial investigations franchise, London House International, provides a comprehensive range of investigative services to a blue chip client base. Fraser McKay looks at how its franchise owners help locate ‘missing’ people for their clients.

Focus on tracing

Trace enquiries account for approximately 25 per cent of the instructions that are received at London House head office from its national clients.

The company’s strength is its field force of franchise owners, all of who are skilled and experienced in the art of tracing. London House differs from many traditional agencies in that it does not rely purely on database enquiries... why have a field force and keep them shut away?

London House’s franchise owners always visit the last known address of the subject and begin their enquiries by speaking to occupiers, neighbours etc. – always discreetly and always within current legislation. They follow the trail, wherever it may lead, and keep going until they have an answer. London House’s franchise owners are successful in the majority of cases and there is a certain amount of satisfaction for them and their clients, in finding that elusive person who just didn't want to be found.

Case study

London House was recently asked to confirm the residence of a man who its franchise owners believed was using numerous aliases in an effort to avoid detection.

The trace enquiries began with a series of telephone and database investigations before the London House’s franchise owner visited the subject’s property discreetly so as not to alert the occupiers.

At the address, they were met at the door by a woman who confirmed her identity as Mrs X and that she lived at the address with her husband Mr Y (a different surname) and her son, Mr Z (a further surname).

The London House franchise owner confirmed their understanding with Mrs X and told her they would call her if they needed any further information. London House telephoned later and she again confirmed her earlier comments. When asked about the middle initials, she supplied those for her husband and her alleged son.

These matched the details London House had discovered on databases.

The investigations had also confirmed both adult male names had the same date of birth. Reviewing the information supplied by London House’s clients and the results of their own investigations, they firmly believed the two men with different surnames were, in fact, one and the same person.

These suspicions were confirmed when Mrs X phoned the London House franchise owner later, after a period of reflection perhaps, to ask how they knew to call at her address as only the surname Y was used on records and documentation. London House was able to supply its clients with a detailed statement suitable as evidence in court. Mrs X and Mr Y have been found out. London House know to never assume that things are as they seem.

“Our reputation is unparalleled in our market place and we have a very stable franchise owner base with our longest serving franchise owner remaining with us for 14 years and many more well into their second term of five years.”
Managing Director and co-founder, Godfrey Lancashire

Trace Enquiries
Commercial Debt Collection
Process Serving Legal Documents
Discreet Enquiries
Surveillance Operations
Fraud Investigations
Internal Theft and Undercover Staff Investigations
Statement Taking
Mystery Shopper
Credit Control
Tenant Screening

Franchise Owner Testimonials

David Degiorgio (Ipswich & Colchester) (pictured second from top)
“I felt comfortable working with the head office team, who I found reassuring.”

John Whitewood (Taunton) (pictured second from bottom)
“My business has developed more quickly than I expected. By following my business plan, I expect my London House franchise to experience controlled growth over the next five years.”

Jim Davis (Bournemouth & Solent) (pictured bottom)
“The support has been great – if there is anything you need they are there. I’m still expanding from my current turnover of £70,000.”

Ideal London House franchise owner

London House is looking for franchise owners with a professional background – they do not have to come from a related sector, so they don’t have to be police or investigators, as London House provides two weeks’ residential training at its Milton Keynes head office.

The company is looking for people who have good interpersonal skills together with commitment and enthusiasm to build their own business.

“Prospective franchise owners don't need direct technical experience but it is helpful if they have some understanding of finance and have good street sense,” explains London House Managing Director Godfrey Lancashire. “However, our training is a very professional programme in which they are provided with the technical guidance that they need.”

Key Benefits

  • Brand reputation and credibility
  • Some client business referred from head office
  • Established for some 15 plus years
  • A portfolio of blue-chip client companies
  • Professional white collar operation
  • No money invested in stock
  • Can satisfactorily work from a home office
  • Great lifestyle of variety
  • Flexible hours of work
  • Minimal overheads

Franchise Package

London House, established in 1995, offers two investment level options for aspiring franchise owners. Its Standard package provides a town-sized exclusive territory and can be secured for £10,750 + VAT, while its Premium package covers a larger, regional territory combining a number of population centres for an investment starting at £19,750 + VAT. Both packages include the same level of comprehensive training, ongoing support, full marketing launch programme and access to a Franchise Help Desk, plus introductions to known clients and recommendations about local networking events.

The Facts:

  • One person is declared bankrupt or insolvent in the UK every five minutes
  • UK debt grows by £1m every eight minutes!
  • Amount of interest paid in the UK every day: £263 million