Redundancy opens the doors for Sam and Runa

For Sam Giddy, 41, the prospect of voluntary redundancy was the perfect opportunity to realise his dream of running his own business - and just a few months later, the former IT contractor is launching Recognition Express Birmingham Tamworth with his wife Runa.

"We wanted to run a business we could both enjoy working in", says Sam. "We looked at franchising and decided it would be a good, less risky option for us - and we'd have more support."

Sam will be running the business full-time, with Runa initially helping with accounts and networking on a part-time basis, whilst continuing to care for the couple's three year old twins.

"Recognition Express has developed a winning formula," says Runa. "We were encouraged by the fact that every franchise is different because individual owners decide the areas they want to specialise in. We liked that element of flexibility, which means we can make the business how we want it to be."

The couple will initially run the business from home, taking advantage of the extensive manufacturing facilities of Recognition Express, and plan to open their own premises in Birmingham next year. Specialising in the supply of a wide range of branded products, promotional giveaways and personalised clothing, Recognition Express was first established in the UK in 1979 and is now the UK's leading franchise (and European market leader) in corporate recognition products.

"Recognition Express is in the business of helping companies promote themselves and keep their businesses competitive," says Nigel Toplis, Managing Director of Recognition Express. "Sam and Runa have all the necessary qualities to make their business a big success and they can rely on the support of our organisation to help them get there."