TruGreen: The Franchise with Huge Potential

The first franchisee to join TruGreen's 60 strong network tells Rachel Spaul why there couldn't be a better time to join this growth business

With more than 20 million gardens in the UK and a growing trend to extend home life into the garden fuelled by television and radio, TruGreen predicts a growth curve for its specialist year-round lawn care service.

'There is huge potential for TruGreen to substantially develop the UK market for lawn care with repeat business primarily on an all-year-round basis,' states Alan Taw, TruGreen's first franchisee. 'We have only just scratched the surface. TruGreen will have national coverage within the next couple of years and, from this, the company will develop as a trusted and well-known brand.'

TruGreen, part of the ServiceMaster Group (a Founding Member of the British Franchise Association), has been providing lawn care solutions in the USA for over 30 years. The phenomenal success of the concept is what initially appealed to Alan. 'It is very much a household name in the US and the largest part of the ServiceMaster Group with a turnover of US$1.6 billion.'

Having owned a ServiceMaster Cleaning franchise for Portsmouth & Southampton for 12 years, Alan felt confident in the TruGreen business model and in the franchisor's ability to substantially develop the concept.

TruGreen currently has 60 franchisees in the UK and plans to reach a critical mass of franchisees nationwide before launching a programme of national accounts for large commercial contracts. TruGreen franchisees provide a wide range of services aimed at the improvement and maintenance of lawns.

Sales Director Ken Dennis explains: 'Our methods are well proven and successful. They produce high levels of satisfaction and an exceptional number of customer referrals. It is a management franchise that can be grown from an initial owner-operator business into an area that will support five vehicles.'

Alan's business is currently entering its third year, which is a crucial year for business development. 'We have two vans and anticipate having four by the middle of the year,' Alan outlines. 'We know the products work and are now pushing for more customers. Our target is to have 500 new customers by the end of the year, which will double the business.'

TruGreen franchisees have come from a variety of backgrounds as they are provided with a level of training that equips them to deal with both the technical aspects of lawn care and how to manage and market the business. This is aided by support from head office as well as other franchisees, who are willing to help and impart advice to each other through a mentoring system.

'With any business you need determination and the ability to get out there and win customers,' Alan adds.
'This is a thoroughly enjoyable business. I particularly enjoy being outside treating people's lawns myself and meeting new people.'