A franchise that’s not just for Christmas
In 2012, The Christmas Decorators franchise became the first business ever to be asked to decorate the iconic Manger Square tree in Bethlehem. Now, well into preparations for this year’s festive season, Director Ged Comerford talks to Gareth Samuel about the exciting new projects that the franchise is working on.
A common misconception about the Christmas Decorators franchise, according to Ged, is that they are only busy during the Christmas season.
Ged says: “Most commercial business is organised and signed off by around March or April, occasionally agreements are reached a year or two in advance.
“We have had a lot of work this year, we’ve already started work on a large shopping centre in Rome, installing the various infrastructure in readiness for the busy season.”
The company made worldwide headlines in December 2012, when they became the first organisation to be invited to decorate the Christmas tree at the Church of The Nativity in Manger Square, Bethlehem.
At the time, Ged commented: “When the business was founded in 1999, we aspired to be involved in projects of this scale, so for that ambition to now become a reality is a measure of just how far we’ve come and how strong the brand is.” In addition to decorating the world’s most celebrated Christmas tree, and some of the UK’s best known high end commercial establishments, the franchise is regularly used by many A-list celebrities and sporting superstars, to the extent that the business has gathered a reputation for ‘decorating the homes of the rich and famous at Christmas’.
There is more to the business than just dealing with the rich and famous, as Ged explains: “We started just decorating residential properties but most of our business now comes from the commercial sector. The Christmas trading season is so important to the economy, and doing nothing at Christmas in the retail and leisure industry is just not an option. We still have many high-profile clients, and it is always our aim to deliver nothing less than the perfect Christmas.” While the franchise is a dedicated Christmas company, they also offer bespoke lighting services and lit topiary displays throughout the year, at parties, weddings and other events.
One particular allure of a Christmas Decorators franchise is the amount of work they have in different countries. Ged explains: “For the last few years we have carried out a lot of overseas work and last year we had franchise owners working in Berlin, Hamburg, Athens, Austria, Italy and of course, Bethlehem. We decorated the largest fresh Christmas tree in Europe in Neumünster, outside Hamburg. We also did 16 military bases in Afghanistan for NATO ISAF.”
Currently, the company has 15 franchises throughout the UK and Ireland. Since the business began, the brand has built up a strong reputation for luxurious, tasteful and traditional Christmas displays. To deal with the UK demand and further develop the brand, the head office in Liverpool has recently appointed a new National Sales Director, Gavin Webb, who has worked on many high-profile Christmas decoration displays, including the prestigious extrvanganzas in London’s Oxford, Bond and Regent Streets.
This year, they have also opened their own office in the Far East, headed up by Phillip Kao, to further improve quality control and ensure they are delivering only the highest quality and most innovative products.
As the company prepares itself for another busy festive season, with buildings like Number One Hyde Park on the firm’s list of clients, it is easy to see why the company has such a good image.