Mail Boxes Etc: Your future in your hands...

With two centres in operation and a third on the horizon, brothers-in-law Rikesh and Murli are an example of the business-builder mindset of MBE franchisees. Stuart Anderson interviews

The Mail Boxes Etc (MBE) business concept of providing communication and postal services including mail boxes, packing and shipping, immediately appealed to Murli Mulchandani when he was searching the franchise market for the right opportunity. 'When I discovered that MBE is the largest non-food franchise in the world, I knew I wanted to follow up on my initial interest,' he recalls.

Formerly an importer and distributor of children's clothing, Murli was looking for an opportunity in a new industry to go into in partnership with his brother-in-law Rikesh Nichani. 'I was attracted to the franchise industry by the opportunity to start a business which was replicating an already successful formula,' says Murli. 'There's a level of security there that you can't get starting a business from scratch. We visited an exhibition and looked into the opportunities on offer, but it wasn't until we discovered MBE that our interest became serious. The services MBE supplies are becoming more and more in demand in the modern world.'

Impressed with the openness of the head office team, the partners took them up on their invitation to visit other franchisees' stores and view the business in action, before signing up for the franchise in January 2002. 'We were offered a few sites in central London and decided on a rather unusual one - inside an internet café in the Strand,' reveals Murli. 'We are more focused on providing the courier and mailbox services, whereas other franchisees might focus more on the print and design side of the MBE concept. Each centre adapts to the local business environment.'

After the first year of operations the partners opened their second centre in Shepherds Market, Mayfair. 'When we were looking at franchise opportunities we were very focused on entering a business which wasn't dependent on me or Rikesh being onsite to run the business full-time,' relates Murli. 'Once we had learned how to run one store we confirmed that MBE is something we are able to manage and replicate. In fact, we are actively looking for a site to open a third store.'

Your future in your hands...

People from all walks of life have become successful Mail Boxes Etc. franchisees. Your Mail Boxes Etc. centre will offer a wide range of services including, Worldwide Parcel Delivery, Packaging Services, Digital Copy and Print, Mailbox Rental and Mailing services to local businesses and the general public.

We offer a fully comprehensive franchise package, inlcuding training and marketing as well as help with site selection, lease negotiation, financial planning and unrivalled ongoing support.

MBE is looking for new franchisees to join its network of over 100 centres in the UK and Ireland. MBE I nc. is part of the UPS group with 600 centres worldwide.