High Hopes...My future in franchising

"I've always enjoyed selling and I wanted a business with a really good product range,"says Recognition Express franchisee Arthur Keighley. "Franchising appealed to me because, although I can sell, it's the buying of the goods at the right price that helps. Recognition Express has 25 years worth of suppliers and this really grabbed my attention."

Selling network infrastructure to businesses in the City of London, Arthur had a successful career in the IT industry but the daily commute from Peterborough finally took its toll. 'It was a very good job but the travelling became too much,' he says. 'I'd been looking for something else for near enough two years and wanted something that would interest me and use my sales skills.'

In talking to the franchisees of Recognition Express, Arthur realised that this was the opportunity he was looking for. With two weeks of training that complemented his existing sales experience, Arthur reports that it would be helpful to people from all kinds of backgrounds.

Since launching in August 2004, Arthur has developed his business by managing to secure a range of large corporations as customers. 'I spent a lot of time focusing upon big businesses rather than smaller companies,' he reveals. 'Although this has taken a longer time, it was a challenge that I enjoyed and one that is now paying off.'

Speaking highly of the franchise, Arthur praises the 'excellent IT systems' and 'superb support' he has received. 'There is always someone at head office who is willing to help, be it from general advice to finding the right supplier,' he reflects. 'I couldn't ask for more.'

Suggesting that the franchise would be perfectly suited to those with sales skills, Arthur states that it is also important to be organised and to possess a high level of motivation: 'Personally, this has led me to the next stage of the business. Within the next year I hope to take on an employee which will leave me to concentrate on building my business.'