Franchisee Diary: Andy Chowdhury, Manchester

The company I was working as an area manager for began restructuring and I knew I was about to be made redundant. At that point I decided that I had enough of working for other people and wanted to be my own boss so I began to look into franchising. While attending a franchise exhibition in London I came across the Prokill franchise.

The company appealed to me as it came across as very professional and the people I spoke to were very friendly. Although I was to become the first franchisee to launch with Prokill, I could see the strength of the opportunity. Pest control is an ongoing necessity for any business or residence which, if ignored, can lead to serious costs. At Prokill we provide professional identification, prevention and cure services which meet are mandated by increasingly stringent EU and government directives.

Before launching my franchise in September 2006 I received six weeks training, during which everything was covered that I needed to know for running my business, from using the pest control systems to managing accounts. Running the business has been hard work, however I really enjoy being my own boss and pleasing customers with the service we provide. The fact that Prokill has many accreditations and is such a strong brand has really helped in attracting customers.

In my first year Prokill has expanded to a network of 10 franchisees, and the head office is on track to double the network in year two which gives me a lot of confidence that I made the right choice to get involved at the ground floor. I'm currently in the process of recruiting staff to help me expand my business, while Prokill is also expanding. Our target is to become a household name in five years.